# BLOGS WEBSITE

# Category: Being a good teacher

Anything about what I should be doing as a teacher next time I interact with a student or make a resource for students.

#### Ten years

On the 23rd of July 2008, I started my first day as coordinator of the Maths Learning Centre at the University of Adelaide. Today is the 23rd of July 2018 — the ten year anniversary of that first day. (Well, it was the 23rd of July when I started writing this post!)

So much has happened in […]

#### My Favourite is my favourite

A year ago, I went to Twitter Math Camp (TMC) and it was a wonderful experience. TMC is a great conference full of all sorts of opportunities for maths teachers to learn from each other in many ways. The one way I like the best out of all the possibilities is “My Favourite”.

My Favourite is […]

#### The Human Galton Board

Last week we were booked in to do Human Markov Chains with several groups of school students, but it turned out there would be a lot fewer of them than we expected, and I didn’t think Human Markov Chains would work very well with under 20 students. I still dearly wanted to do a moving […]

#### Human Markov Chains

This blog post is about a moving maths activity that I have wanted to do for years and finally got an opportunity to do this year in 2018. It’s a model of a concept called a “Markov Chain” using human movement.

In a Markov chain, there is a thing that can be in any number of […]

#### Leaving the most important teaching to chance

Something is bothering me about teaching at university: we are leaving the most important teaching to chance.

In most tutorials, there is an opportunity to try out things with a tutor there to talk to about it, or deep discussion of course content, or at the very least worked examples of using the ideas in practice […]

#### Mr Johnson’s Rainbow

I love reading and writing, and the way that people use words to express ideas fascinates me. So it is no surprise that when I was in Year 12, I studied the highest level of English available. My English teacher was called Mr Johnson and I hated him. (It wasn’t really, Mr Johnson — I’ve […]

#### A public health approach to improving teaching and learning

Making a big difference to student learning is a tricky business. Here at my university, there are a certain number of (wonderful) teaching staff who are champions of innovation, always making big changes to the way they do things and jumping onto any innovation as soon as it comes around. Yet the students not in […]

#### Stop hating on cis(θ)

I met with some lovely Electrical and Electronic Engineering lecturers yesterday about their various courses and how I can help their students with the maths involved. And of course complex numbers came up, because they do come up in electronics. (I have not the slightest clue how they come up, but I am aware that […]

#### Three hours in the MLC Drop-In Centre

Last week, I had one of those days in the MLC Drop-In Centre where I was hyper-aware of what I was doing as I was talking with students and by the end I was overwhelmed by the sheer volume of things I had thought about. I decided that today I might attempt to process (or […]

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#### The Arts students’ maths brain

Yesterday I talked about one of the common responses to people finding out I am a mathematician/maths teacher, that of saying, “I’m not a maths person.” The other common response I get is, “I don’t have a maths brain.” (John Rowe mentioned this in his comment on the previous post.)

This is how I reacted last […]