Question of the Day: What does this have to do with math?

Submitted by Michelle Breaux on

For the last 2 years, I have been using a question of the day to start my classes as part of a cooperative learning strategy learned from taking the Johnson & Johnson Cooperative Learning workshop.  After doing this for a a year, I wanted to get feedback from students, so I included items about the questions of the day (along with other cooperative activities) on my end of course evaluation. I discovered that for the most part, students found the questions of the day valuable, but some students saw no connection to the class and others commented that they would prefer questions of the day that more directly relate to the content in the course. As a result, I decided to create questions of the day that relate directly to either math in general or the content in the course. I have started a list of questions (attached) that I plan to use next semester. I have attached a summary of my student survey results, my original list of questions of the day, and my new math related questions of the day (still a work in progress). Please let me know if you have suggestion for other questions! I plan to survey my students after spring again to see if it made an impact.

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display_name_fallback Tue, 11/21/2017 - 11:45am

Hi Michelle - Changing the "question of the day" to more specifically tie into course content/math is a great way to encourage deeper thinking. In looking at the course evaluation results, student preferences differ by course. Was the same question used in each class or did each class have a unique question of the day? As you plan for next semester - do you intend to use one question per week and compare the results by week? For instance, one of the questions you have listed is "What is your favorite thing about math & why?". The qualitative answers might be interesting to compare across courses, but a quantitative comparison about how "valuable" the questions are might vary by course content. Looking forward to seeing more of the results!

Becky Baranowski Tue, 11/21/2017 - 12:30pm

Michelle - I am really happy to see you have received feedback from students and plan to try something with it next semester.  I predominately do question of the day as a warm up math problem, and I really like it.  I am looking forward to seeing what the students say, and what you observe, next semester.  I wonder if you will see less "community" amongst the students since they will be asked math questions instead of non-math qustions.  I wonder if this won't have an impact on building community. Hmmmm........   Thanks for taking time to submit a CATS.