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The Teacher Tip

Using Technology in Math Class

May 7, 2018

Adapted from Teaching with Mathematical Argument by Despina Stylianou and Maria Blanton

Technology does not only involve mathematics-specific devices and software. There are several non-mathematics-specific tools that can also play a role in argumentation, mostly by supporting classroom interactions.

Electronic whiteboards can be used to present tasks to students. Students’ responses can be recorded

and shared with the classroom without losing accuracy and detail, allowing for authentic argumentation. Document cameras can be particularly helpful toward that end. A classroom response system (also known as “clickers”) might be used to quickly gather student responses to a poll or simple “agree/disagree” questions regarding an argument or an idea proposed in the class during a heated discussion on the truthfulness of an assertion.

We can use social networks, and students’ interest in them, to motivate or advance discussion. Building, supporting, and critiquing arguments naturally lend themselves to such platforms. For example, students might post an argument or a solution on a blog or other social network platform and open
it to their peers, who then may provide feedback and critique or advance the argument further. Virtual whiteboards, blogs, or wikis are all currently readily available as part of web-based applications specially designed for education that can be easily used in classrooms. Inviting students to incorporate these technologies in building arguments not only makes mathematics seem a part of modern life but is also another means of building community and shared accountability—an integral part of argumentation.

To learn more about Teaching with Mathematical Argument and download a sample chapter, visit

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