Highland students take part in an exercise around disaster prediction using math as part of a resource for teachers. Image, screenshot

Highland students take part in an exercise around disaster prediction using math as part of a resource for teachers. Image, screenshot

Comox students help create online resource for teachers

Grade 10 class from Highland Secondary are now in their graduation year

When Highland math students took part in a 2019 project using data to predict disasters, they couldn’t have known how relevant disaster modeling would soon be.

No one could’ve had a pandemic on their mind, when the class, then in Grade 10, took part in a project through Open School BC called Focusing on Competencies in Math. The students are now in their Grade 12 year.

The Highland students worked on an assignment using data called “Predicting a Catastrophe,” along with a couple of other schools.

“Our students did such a great job,” says Highland teacher Becky Sulek, who was one of the teachers working with students.

The Open School BC project involved several schools from around the province working on different scenarios, such as salmon returns, playing with quadratics, communicating and representing math through trigonometry, and the beauty of math. Students worked with educators to create activities around math at the secondary school level. These also incorporated First People’s principles of learning and Indigenous worldviews as much as possible.

“They grabbed 12 math teachers from around the province, and we … talked about what we were going to build,” Sulek says.

A videographer was on hand to film the sessions to accompany the online resources, which includes class activities, teachers’ thoughts about designing the activities, and reflections from teachers and students about the activities.

“You could apply it to different activities,” she says. “You don’t have to do the one specific activity.”

In one of the videos, Sulek’s students discussed population numbers and food production, and how data can lead them to consider ideas such as food shortage, making choices about using graphs versus tables or how to interpret the data.

The work is now part of an online resource for teachers that was published this fall. The package includes an activity plan and handouts. It gives math teachers something they can assess other than a test, says Sulek, such as a student’s ability to communicate or reflect on their thinking. In the case of the disaster exercise, this focused on their ability to reason and model, but it also allowed them to delve into a humanities issue.

“The students were just so great about their ability to talk about what they were doing,” she says.

The teacher was confident in her class’s ability, which is why she had them take part in the project.

“I’m so proud of them in helping create this resource,” Sulek says.

It came about, in part, in response to the provincial government’s redesigned curriculum and graduation requirements in recent years. Sulek says it has been a little trickier redesigning the curriculum for math than for other subjects.

READ MORE: Highland Secondary student wins Horatio Alger scholarship

The point of the Open Schools BC project is to show the students in action and how math can be applied to different things – for example, using data to help predict disasters, which might take on added importance during a pandemic.

“It’s kind of cool because it’s so relevant now, with COVID … interpreting and making predictions,” she says. “We have all this data that we can now interpret and analyze and make predictions and consider if it’s reasonable … all important skills in math.”

For more, see https://www.openschool.bc.ca/competenciesmath/index.html



mike.chouinard@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Comox ValleyEducation

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Courtenay councillor Will Cole-Hamilton, standing at right, sits on steering committees of two organizations that are tackling the problem of greenhouse gas emissions. File photo
Courtenay councillor leads campaign to reduce building-sector GHG emissions

Courtenay councillor Will Cole-Hamilton wants local governments to carry a little more… Continue reading

A rendering shows the entrance planned for the Hornby Island Arts Centre. Image supplied
Numerous Comox Valley projects get CERIP grants

Numerous Comox Valley projects have received grants through the Community Economic Recovery… Continue reading

Thrifty Foods. (Black Press file photo)
Thrifty Foods confirms staff member tests positive for COVID-19 in Courtenay

The company currently lists 12 stores within B.C. with confirmed cases

Comox Valley Schools’ distance learning program, Navigate (NIDES), which saw some large gains in enrolment this year, could see a return to normal numbers come September. Image, screenshot
Comox Valley Schools expects enrolment drop come fall

Decline projected online, as more students return to ‘bricks-and-mortar’ classes

Cumberland will be looking to a parcel tax to cover debt for its new water system. File photo
Cumberland plans for parcel tax to cover water debt

Parcel tax review panel would take place March 22, if necessary

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature. (B.C. government)
B.C. reports 10 additional deaths, 395 new COVID-19 cases

The majority of new coronavirus infections were in the Fraser Health region

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools is preparing a rapid response team proposal for submission to the B.C. Ministry of Education. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Nanaimo-Ladysmith school district chosen as COVID-19 rapid response team

Team to consist of SD68 and Island Health staff, according to B.C. Ministry of Education

A new survey has found that virtual visits are British Columbian’s preferred way to see the doctor amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Unsplash)
Majority of British Columbians now prefer routine virtual doctor’s visits: study

More than 82% feel virtual health options reduce wait times, 64% think they lead to better health

Captain and Maria, a pair of big and affectionate akbash dogs, must be adopted together because they are so closely bonded. (SPCA image)
Shuswap SPCA seeks forever home for inseparable Akbash dogs

A fundraiser to help medical expenses for Captain and Maria earned over 10 times its goal

The missing camper heard a GSAR helicopter, and ran from his tree well waving his arms. File photo
Man trapped on Manning mountain did nearly everything right to survive: SAR

The winter experienced camper was overwhelmed by snow conditions

Cory Mills, Eric Blackmore and A.J. Jensen, all 20, drown in the Sooke River in February 2020. (Contributed photos)
Coroner confirms ‘puddle jumping’ in 2020 drowning deaths of 3 B.C. men

Cory Mills, Eric Blackmore and A.J. Jensen pulled into raging river driving through nearby flooding

Castlegar doctor Megan Taylor contracted COVID-19 in November. This photo was taken before the pandemic. Photo: Submitted
Kootenay doctor shares experience contracting COVID-19

Castlegar doctor shares her COVID experience

Ashley Paxman, 29, is in the ICU after being struck by a vehicle along Highway 97 Feb. 18, 2021. She remains in critical condition. (GoFundMe)
Okanagan woman in ICU with broken bones in face after being struck by car

She remains in serious condition following Feb. 18 incident

Most Read