Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sports and Math -- Why do they have to be different?

Is coaching and teaching different?  So this year I am coaching HS volleyball, and this is not a post on that.  But it is a post about why do we feel there is a difference between coaching a sport and teaching math -- because I think most people think they are different.

A key to coaching is not to talk too much, and it really is tough.  You show them a skill quickly and then give them a chance to replicate and we develop, we make them better - we coach.  Math teaching should be exactly the same - we need to lecture less.

All too often we seem to think we can talk our way to their understanding.  I have been working hard at making flipped videos for my Algebra class and while I rarely lectured more than 20 minutes - these videos are falling between 4 to 8 minutes.  So what was I doing the other 14 minutes?  (A post for later)

I just need to work on guiding more, talking less.  And remind myself, repeatedly, that students learn from doing, not listening (and I would argue a minority really listen and understand when I do lecture).  But the key will be too talk less and have the students do more.  It is time to become a math coach, get the players active and develop.