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Getting Ready for Algebra Using Virtual Manipulatives*
 
Course Description
    

This course, Getting Ready for Algebra using Virtual Manipulatives, will help middle school teachers learn approaches for integrating online interactive resources into their classroom practice. There is substantial evidence to suggest that a solid foundation in algebra provides a gateway to the higher levels of mathematics necessary for success in higher education, technological or scientific occupations, and business applications. Given this reality, as well as the increased focus on accountability and high academic standards, many schools and districts have instituted policies that require all students to complete algebra as a requirement for high school graduation.

In response to the accountability measures outlined in the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) worked with a panel of teachers and experts from the Educational Testing Service (ETS) to develop 17 Algebra I readiness indicators, including the 5 "process" indicators and the 12 "content and skills" indicators. This course is structured around the 12 content and skills readiness indicators and will introduce a collection of virtual manipulatives that will help curriculum planners and classroom teachers meet the demand to prepare students for Algebra I. As a final product, participants will develop a technology-enhanced lesson that is aligned with the SREB algebra readiness indicators.

This course provides professional development aligned to the Common Core Mathematics Standards through readings, activities and classroom applications of teaching strategies. The Common Core State Standards for Math establish what students should know but not how teachers should teach. This course is designed to help teachers learn instructional strategies that guide students to reach these new challenging content standards. 


*This course is open to all certified WV educators who have or are who are teaching or co-teaching mathematics.
 

 
Course Syllabus
    This course, Getting Ready for Algebra using Virtual Manipulatives, will help middle school teachers learn approaches for integrating online interactive resources into their classroom practice. There is substantial evidence to suggest that a solid foundation in algebra provides a gateway to the higher levels of mathematics necessary for success in higher education, technological or scientific occupations, and business applications. Given this reality, as well as the increased focus on accountability and high academic standards, many schools and districts have instituted policies that require all students to complete algebra as a requirement for high school graduation.

In response to the accountability measures outlined in the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) worked with a panel of teachers and experts from the Educational Testing Service (ETS) to develop 17 Algebra I readiness indicators, including the 5 "process" indicators and the 12 "content and skills" indicators. This course is structured around the 12 content and skills readiness indicators and will introduce a collection of virtual manipulatives that will help curriculum planners and classroom teachers meet the demand to prepare students for Algebra I. As a final product, participants will develop a technology-enhanced lesson that is aligned with the SREB algebra readiness indicators.

This course provides professional development aligned to the Common Core Mathematics Standards through readings, activities and classroom applications of teaching strategies. The Common Core State Standards for Math establish what students should know but not how teachers should teach. This course is designed to help teachers learn instructional strategies that guide students to reach these new challenging content standards. Specific Common Core State Standards for Math addressed by this course are listed in the Standards section on this page.

For more information about the Mathematics Common Core State Standards, click here.

Goals and Objectives

During this course, participants will learn skills and strategies to:

identify the essential content and process readiness indicators for student success in Algebra I;

identify virtual manipulatives and interactive applets that target the essential skills and knowledge aligned with each of the content readiness indicators;

analyze virtual manipulatives and interactive applets according to given criteria including: alignment with mathematics learning goals, instructional strengths and limitations, ease of use, and availability of support materials;

use virtual manipulatives and interactive applets in activities that target the essential skills and knowledge required to meet the essential algebra readiness indicators;

develop activities that use virtual manipulatives and interactive applets to target the essential skills and knowledge required to meet the essential algebra readiness indicators; and

better support their students' mastery of the relevant Common Core Standards.

Audience

This is an introductory course for teachers, technology specialists, curriculum specialists, professional development specialists, or other school personnel. Participants are expected to have regular access to computers, and proficiency with email and current web-browsers. 

*This course is open to all certified WV educators who have or are who are teaching or co-teaching mathematics.

Workshop Details

This course is divided into seven one-week sessions: an Orientation, and six content-based sessions. Each content session includes readings, activities, and an online discussion among course participants. The time for completing each content session is estimated to be between 6.5 and 7 hours.  

Session One

Introduction to Algebra Readiness and Virtual Manipulatives

Session Two

Number and Operations Indicators

Session Three

Geometry and Measurement Indicators

Session Four

Data and Probability Indicators

Session Five

Algebra and Function Indicators

Session Six

Summary and Final Project

 

Certificate of Completion and Graduate Credit

Upon successful completion of this course, Getting Ready for Algebra Using Virtual Manipulative, participants will receive a Certificate of Completion documenting successful completion of the course requirements. Certificates are distributed to each qualifying participant via attachment to the Session Six Dropbox shortly after the completion of the course.

Participants in this course are eligible to receive non-degree graduate credits from either West Virginia University, Concord University, West Virginia State University or Marshall University. Credits will be awarded at the end of the semester in which the course occurs. Additional information is available on the course News/Welcome Page.

Assessment

Specific questions about assessment, expectations, or requirements should be directed to the facilitator of this course.

The following criteria will be used to determine successful completion of this course:

Obtaining a score of 90% or better on the Orientation Quiz;

Participation in all session discussion forums;

Completion of the course’s final project, submitted to the facilitator via the course dropbox(es) and posted in the appropriate discussion forum(s); and

Completion of the orientation and final course surveys.

Orientation Quiz
During the Orientation Session, participants are expected to complete the Orientation Quiz. The quiz may be taken as many times as necessary to score the required 90% proficiency.

Readings and Activities
Participants are expected to complete the required course readings and activities as posted in each of the session assignment pages. Optional readings may also be completed, but are not mandatory.

Discussion Participation
Participants are required to post a minimum of three substantial postings, including one that begins a new thread and at least two that respond to an existing, original thread, in all session discussion forums. 

Participants will be evaluated on the frequency and quality of their discussion board participation. Postings will be reviewed based on their relevance, demonstrated understanding of course concepts, examples cited, overall quality, degree to which they extend the discussion, and tone. 

Original postings are to be made by Sunday night. By Monday night, it is expected that participants respond to at least two colleagues' original postings in a respectful, professional manner, making sure to extend or expand the conversation by adding new ideas or examples. Postings that respond to other participants will be evaluated on relevance, degree to which they extend the discussion, and tone. P

Participants are to read all the original messages and at least half (50%) of the total messages posted for each session by Tuesday night. During Sessions Four and Six, participants will be asked to peer review other colleagues' projects in the Discussions using PQP. The Final Project Rubric and the PQP Help Guide will assist you to complete this successfully.

Workshop Activities
Participants are expected to complete the course readings and activities as posted in each of the session assignment pages. Activities may include exploring websites related to course content, watching online video clips, using specific technology applications, solving problems, and working on the final project.

Final Project
As a final project, participants will select a virtual manipulative and create a lesson plan for using it to address one of the SREB algebra readiness indicators with middle school students. Participants will complete the Final Project Template using the Final Project Rubric as a guide as to what is expected in the final project. The Final Project Rubric contains criteria by which the final project will be evaluated. Please reference this rubric prior to beginning work on the final project. Participants will submit their Final Project Template to the course dropbox during Sessions Four and Six for facilitator review. Participants are expected to complete and submit the final product during the final course session. 

Copyright guidelines are to be observed throughout the course project and all course activities. All work associated with the course project is to be the original work of the course participant. Fair Use does not apply to the course project.

Grades
All grades in the course gradebook must be a "C" for successful course completion. A grade of "C" indicates that all work has been completed and the work meets the expectations for that assignment.

Course Surveys
Participants are expected to complete an orientation survey by Sunday during Session One of the course, and a Final Survey by Sunday during the final course session.

Standards

Participants will reference the WV NxG CSOs for Mathematics and the WV 21st Century Technology Tools in their course project.

This course, Getting Ready for Algebra using Virtual Manipulatives, will help participants learn and apply the following
Common Core Mathematics Standards to their teaching:

Common Core Standards

Grade

Expressions and Equations

Apply and extend previous understandings of arithmetic to algebraic expressions.

6.EE.2

Write, read, and evaluate expressions in which letters stand for numbers.

6.EE.3

Apply the properties of operations to generate equivalent expressions.

6.EE.4

Identify when two expressions are equivalent (i.e., when the two expressions name the same number regardless of which value is substituted into them).

6

Expressions and Equations

Solve real-life and mathematical problems using numerical and algebraic expressions and equations.

7.EE.1

Apply properties of operations as strategies to add, subtract, factor, and expand linear expressions with rational coefficients.

Ratios and Proportional Relationships

Analyze proportional relationships and use them to solve real-world and mathematical problems.

7.RP.1

Compute unit rates associated with ratios of fractions, including ratios of lengths, areas and other quantities measured in like or different units.

7.RP.2

Recognize and represent proportional relationships between quantities.

7

Geometry

Understand and Apply the Pythagorean Theorem.

8.G.6

Explain a proof of the Pythagorean Theorem and its converse.

8.G.7

Apply the Pythagorean Theorem to determine unknown side lengths in right triangles in real-world and mathematical problems in two and three dimensions.

8.G.8

Apply the Pythagorean Theorem to find the distance between two points in a coordinate system.

8

© 2010. National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and Council of Chief State School Officers. All rights reserved.

This course meets the standards for Content, Instructional Design, and Technology as defined in the National Standards of Quality for Online Courses, published by the International Association for K-12 Online Learning(iNACOL).

This course provides teachers with an opportunity to meet the Engage in Professional Growth and Leadership standard as defined in the National Educational Technology Standards and Performance Indicators for Teachers, published by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE).

About this Workshop

This course was developed by EdTech Leaders Online at Education Development Center. EdTech Leaders Online provides capacity building training and online courses for school districts, state departments of education, and colleges and universities.

This course cannot be copied or modified without written permission of EDC.

Last update: December 2014

© 2014 Education Development Center, Inc., through its project, EdTech Leaders® Online, http://www.edtechleaders.org. All rights reserved.