There are many websites and apps that will crank out the procedural steps for students. I have yet to run into a kid who has not heard of Photomath. If we can be honest with ourselves and ask “what has technology made obsolete?” then we can move onto doing something else instead. More critical thinking, more analyzing, more modeling, less rote step memorizing. Jo Boaler says in her book Mathematical Mindsets that girls, in particular, need to understand what they are doing.
A modern math lesson is NOT students cranking out a page of math problems by following algorithms. Students should be doing the Standards for Mathematical Practice. Notice none of them say “show your steps.” Instead “analyze,” “plan a solution pathway,” “explain,” “make sense,” “creating a coherent representation,” “construct arguments,” “apply the mathematics,” “explore consequences,” and “communicate.”
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