Author Archives: Daniel Scher

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About Daniel Scher

Daniel Scher, Ph.D., is a senior scientist at KCP Technologies, where he co-directs the NSF-funded Dynamic Number project. He has developed Sketchpad activities across the entire mathematics curriculum, from elementary school through college. He received his Ph.D. in Mathematics Education at New York University.

Playing with Triangular Decompositions

Guest blogger Juan Camilo Acevedo is part of the University of Chicago’s Center for Elementary Mathematics and Science Education (CEMSE) digital team, where he develops Sketchpad-based activities for Everyday Mathematics. Currently, he teaches undergraduate language classes at the University of … Continue reading

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Simultaneous Equations in Elementary School? You Bet!

Algebra classes devote considerable time to equations in a single variable before solving multiple equations in two or more unknowns. But just because elementary-age students are not familiar with algebraic symbolism doesn’t mean they can’t solve simultaneous equations, too! The … Continue reading

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Eigenvectors of 2 x 2 Matrices: A Geometric Exploration

Shiva Gol Tabaghi obtained her PhD degree in Mathematics Education from Simon Fraser University in 2012. This guest post is based on her doctoral dissertation research. Presently, she is involved in teaching undergraduate mathematics courses at Simon Fraser University. She enjoys using dynamic … Continue reading

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Arranging Addends Puzzles

Below is an interactive puzzle called Arranging Addends. The goal of the puzzle is to arrange the circles and the six numbers (1, 2, 4, 8, 16, and 32) so that three conditions are met simultaneously: The sum of the numbers … Continue reading

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Experiments with a Color Calculator

In the 1970s, my childhood friend Tim owned an Activision console and a variety of game cartridges. Tim was the envy of our block, but no matter how much I enjoyed a rousing game of Pong, I knew that my … Continue reading

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Factor Patterns at Your Fingertips

Take a look at the interactive model below. Most of the numbers in the array are shaded orange, but several are blue. What is special about these blue values? They are the factors of 32, the largest number in the … Continue reading

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A Hidden Polygons Puzzle

Take a look at the two groups of shapes below. Both groups contain an equilateral triangle and a square. Now imagine that you showed students each group and asked them to identify the shapes. Do you think students would do … Continue reading

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Wait for a Date

Last year, I wrote a blog post about the following probability question: Two friends arrange for a lunch date between 12:00 and 1:00. A week later, however, neither of them remembers the exact meeting time. As a result, each person … Continue reading

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A Pythagorean Tree Grows in Your Web Browser

A little over a year ago, the Museum of Mathematics opened in the heart of New York City. I blogged about the museum last January, and have since returned with friends and a class of community college students. One of … Continue reading

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What Is All the Fuss About Lines?

Yesterday, I led a webinar that demonstrated how Sketchpad can be a powerful tool for exploring Common Core algebra topics. My examples included solving for unknowns with a pan balance, exploring the slopes of lines, maximizing the area of a fixed-perimeter … Continue reading

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