There are many programs and web resources that can be used in the teaching and learning of mathematics; many of these are free to download. MEI has produced resources to support the use of several of these software programs in the classroom. Links to free MEI resources will appear in the software sections below:
Autograph is an essential tool for the Mathematics classroom allowing for statistical, 2D and 3D graphs to be plotted easily.
Please follow the links below to access MEI resources supporting the use of Autograph:
Desmos is is a free graphing calculator that is available online or as an Android/iOS app. There are also lots of free teaching activities and materials on their website: www.desmos.com/
Spreadsheets are a very useful tool in the Mathematics classroom and can be used for many types of investigations.
Students are likely to benefit greatly from learning how to enter formulae into spreadsheets. This can help them remember important formulae and the technique will obviously be useful to them in other areas. In addition to this they will have to learn the specific syntax of the package they are using; this will allow the importance of conventions for syntax to be emphasised. A good example is to have students set up a spreadsheet that solves the quadratic equation ax2 + bx + c = 0, when the values of a, b and c are entered in separate cells. For more details see NCETM Mathemapedia: Spreadsheet Algebra
The 'Forms' toolbar on Excel allows for scroll-bars/sliders to be added to worksheets. These are excellent for displaying the effect of varying parameters in a situation. They work well with IWBs as they can be operated from the board, removing the need for key-entry.
Please follow the links below to access MEI resources supporting the use of Excel:
For guidance on using Excel, including tutorials with screen-shots see: www.excel-easy.com
Geogebra is free mathematics software featuring interactive graphics, geometry, algebra and spreadsheet. Hundreds of thousands of prepared materials are available on the site.
MEI is a GeoGebra Institute supporting teachers through workshops, professional development materials and creation of resources: GeoGebra Institute of MEI.
Geogebra can be used to create dynamic demonstrations for mechanics. Demonstrations for every question on the January 2007 Mechanics 1 paper have been produced and are available to be downloaded. Using Geogebra in this way highlights how mechanics is an application of both geometry and algebra.
Please follow the links below to access MEI resources supporting the use of Geogebra:
TI-Nspire is a suite of learning tools, available as a handheld device and as computer software. Both the handheld and software have Calculator, Graphs, Geometry, Lists & Spreadsheets, Data & Statistics and an interactive Notes applications. The handheld includes a Touchpad, which operates just like a computer mousepad, to aid navigation and manipulation of objects. A CAS (Computer Algebra System) version of TI-Nspire is also available
TI-Nspire Teacher software features a handheld emulator and a Question application to provide flexibility in lesson planning and delivery. A free 90-day trial version of the Teacher software is available. Resources, including lesson ready TI-Nspire documents, are available free at Nspiring Learning.
The applications of TI-Nspire can be dynamically linked to show multiple representations of the same problem and to allow learners to see how changes to one representation affect another. For example, it is possible to “Grab-and-move” a graph and watch as the equation of the graph changes, while changes to measurements are automatically recorded in a spreadsheet. With the document structure work can be saved, reviewed and distributed using TI Connect-to-Class software and the TI-Nspire Navigator wireless system.
LINDO (Linear, INteractive, and Discrete Optimizer) is a Linear Programming package which is needed for the computer-based module Decision & Discrete Computation. It is also suitable for use in teaching the other modules in this strand. LINDO can be ordered from MEI using the LINDO order form; you can also read the LINDO manual.
Formulator Tarsia (previously known as Jigsaw 2005 or Activity Template Software) allows you to create mathematical jigsaws, dominoes and other card-sort activities in an easily printable form. It is free to download from Hermitech Laboratory.
Mechanics online is mechanics software that allows dynamic models to be built and animated. The models are interactive - parameters can be varied and data plotted/exported.
Maxima is a full-featured CAS that specializes in symbolic operations but it also offers numerical capabilities such as arbitrary-precision arithmetic: integers and rational numbers which can grow to sizes limited only by machine memory, and floating point numbers whose precision can be set arbitrarily large ("bfloats").
Cabri Geometry II Plus lets you dynamically explore Euclidean, transformational and coordinate geometry. You can construct any geometrical object, including vectors and conics (inc. ellipses and hyperbolas) and see equations of lines, circles, ellipses, loci, and coordinates of points. See:
Cabri 3D v2 lets you construct, manipulate and explore solid and space geometry in 3 dimensions.
Geometer's Sketchpad is dynamic geometry software offering exploration of wide range of mathematics, featuring enhanced support for algebra and calculus as well as geometry.
“Graphs” features a variety of movable graphs covering most curves needed for C1 and C2. The graphs can be moved on axes that are displayed without scales. Pens are provided to annotate the graphs. It is designed to be used with a PC, projector and whiteboard (interactive or traditional).
Graphs (swf) - requires Flash player
Graphs (exe) - does not require Flash player
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