Best Tablet PC Software for Math Teacher

Discussion in 'Software' started by MrAlgebra, May 21, 2011.

  1. MrAlgebra

    MrAlgebra Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hi all,

    I am a math teacher (Algebra 1, Algebra 2, pre-Calculus) and my school will be getting me a Windows 7 Tablet PC in the fall. What math software should I be considering to take advantage of the Tablet and the stylus?
     
  2. Steve S

    Steve S Scribbler - Standard Member Super Moderator

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    <<...What math software should I be considering...>>

    Mr: Take a look at Calculator and MathJournal by xThink . xThink offers demo versions of both applications so that you can try before you buy and there is a student discount. (Note that you have to contact xThink to get the MathJournal demo.)

    Of course, there's Wolfram's Mathematica ( www.wolfram.com ), and if you can be online while teaching, you can leverage Wolfram Alpha. Other apps include Microsoft's Mathematics 4:

    Microsoft Mathematics: Microsoft Education Product Center

    and other apps like MAPLE, MatLab, etc. Microsoft used to offer a demo version of a research project called MathPad, but I'm pretty sure that the demo has now been withdrawn ( http://research.microsoft.com/apps/video/default.aspx?id=104747 )

    This should keep you occupied until the Fall. Good luck...
     
  3. MrAlgebra

    MrAlgebra Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hi Steve,

    Thanks for the references. I am already familiar with Wolfram Alpha, Mathematica, Maple, and Matlab, but they do not seem to take advantage of the Tablet PC and stylus. Am I missing something?

    Also, the link to the Microsoft research project was very interesting. I was able to track down the researcher in the video and it appears that project has been spun out as a product by a company named Fluidity Software (www.fluiditysoftware.com). They have a product called FluidMath. Anyone have any experience with it?
     
  4. Steve S

    Steve S Scribbler - Standard Member Super Moderator

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    <<...Am I missing something?..>>

    ...Not as far as I know. I mentioned them because, relatively speaking, there is little in the way of serious math software of any type available. Products like MathJournal are very few and far between. (...And I'm afraid that the relative lack of demand for such products probably says something about the state of American knowledge about math...)

    <<...the link to the Microsoft research project was very interesting...>>

    ...I was very interested in MathPad when it was current (Brown University used to be a hotbed of research into pen graphics) and MathPad looked promising, but after the initial wave of articles, the whole thing seemed to fade away. I'll take a look at FluidMath...
     
  5. Steve S

    Steve S Scribbler - Standard Member Super Moderator

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    Installed FluidMath late this evening (22May11). The trial version is good for about ten days. Price is pretty steep given the apparent capabilities.

    More when I've had a chance to familiarize myself with this application...
     
  6. Steve S

    Steve S Scribbler - Standard Member Super Moderator

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  7. OchoZero9

    OchoZero9 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    look into smart notebook. almost every classroom in my school has it. but none of my professors use it. Maybe the liberal arts are the only ones trained.
     
  8. Steve S

    Steve S Scribbler - Standard Member Super Moderator

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    My follow-up review of FluidMath, based on their 10-day demo, is here:

    RobBushway.com
     
  9. MrAlgebra

    MrAlgebra Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Well, its been a bit of time since my original post and since then I received a Tablet PC from my school and I now have FluidMath loaded on it.

    All I can say is Wow!! The developers of FluidMath really hit it out of park when it comes to a teaching tool for High School mathematics, especially Algebra.

    I've only been using it for a bit of time now, but I already use it in class nearly every day -- I love it, and more importantly, the kids love it too!

    From a teachers perspective, I can say that the real power comes from the ability to move quickly between the three representations (algebraic, graphical, numeric/table). The software is also super-interactive. With a simple stroke of the stylus, you can create a slider to explore graphs and "play" with transformations of functions.

    From a practical perspective, it is also saving me lots of time creating exams/quizzes/handouts since I can convert my handwritten math and copy it into Word in a flash.

    Thanks for the original pointer to FluidMath and I'll try to post back again after I've taught with it for a longer time.
     
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