Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Free Interactive Fun Mathematics

The "National Library of Virtual Manipulatives" ("NLVM") is a set of resources that run as interactive online mathematical demonstrations, puzzles, and games.

(The above image is a solved puzzle where the geometrical shapes had to be arranged in a certain red and blue repeating pattern).

Mathematics is not a spectator sport. All too often, traditional instruction fails to actively involve students. One way to address the problem is through the use of manipulatives, physical objects that help students visualize relationships and applications. This is what the "NLVM" hopes to provide.

The "NLVM" Homepage is located at
http://nlvm.usu.edu/ .

This index page consists of a matrix of options for different branches of maths, mapped agianst different year levels. We simply position our mouse on the square we want (for example Year 6-8 Algebra), and then click to go the the list of resources.

Here is a window into the actual home page:
(Use the horizontal scroll bar to see the Y9-12 column)

Basically, using the "NLVM" is simply a matter of getting in there
and then picking and clicking to explore how the different items work.

For example, here is an interactive Algebra Factor Tree :

(Enter numbers into the window below to try out building the factor tree)

If we scroll down to the bottom of the tree, we can change from "Computer" to "User" and enter our own numbers to factorise. We can also do two factor trees per screen if we want to.

Here is a view of all of the items that are contained in Level 6-8 Algebra

Here is a nice Coin Toss simulator and analyser for Probablility:
(Press the "Start" button and let the simulator run to completion).

There is lots more to explore in the "NLVM", and so why not ditch the Maths books for a lesson and check it out.

Big Passy Wasabi

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