During Covid-19 mandated social distancing and distance learning, this page is set up to provide helpful resources to instructors dealing with the transition to online instructing.
One thing to think about is whether you want to gather your students together into a virtual class, do you want to give them assignments that they do on their own and submit to you, or does a combination of the two techniques work best?
Most of the following resources only require paper, a pencil, a straightedge and some sort of compass. Students can even build their own compass using three pencils and a few rubber bands.
Bevins Guide to Boat Building Math
Every exercise in Bevin’s Guide to Boat Building Math can be used through distance learning. Building the Cardstock Model leads to learning how to read a ruler and use fractions with the Magic Ruler, the connections between Geometry, Fractions, Decimals/ Percents and Degrees with the Magic Circle and even the concepts of volume and displacement through having students float their models and load them with pennies.
Afternoons in the Boatshop makes a good reading exercise that ties into the hands-on math and model building exercises in Bevin’s Guide to Boat Building Math.
Using the Framing Square Math book, students can build their own framing square on p76. (cereal boxes are great) Then, with a little ingenuity, they can do the majority of the exercises in the book and learn everything from fractions to ratios and even Algebra.
The Teaching With Small Boats Alliance (TWSBA) represents over 300 groups who use small boats as teaching tools. During Covid-19 mandated social distancing and distance learning, TWSBA community share:
Even though it is “boat themed”, check it out and participate, if appropriate. There are great resources here.
Visit TWSBA Distance Learning Page
For a teaching platform that provides instruction, practice, and assessment, we recommend checking out Khan Academy .
You’ll need to sign up as a teacher and create a class. Your students will need to sign up and select you as their teacher/ coach. You could then make assignments of exercises and videos.
There is a “playlist” spreadsheet that crosswalks hands-on math skills to Khan Academy videos. Figure out which skills you want to teach, then pre-watch the videos to make sure they’ll work well with your apprentices.
This web page has all the essentials about setting up your class on Khan Academy.
By Hand and Eye
Jim Tolpin and George Walker, along with Lost Art Press publisher Chris Schwarz, have made By Hound and Eye and From Truths to Tools free downloads to folks who will use them with kids and students.
By Hound and Eye is a workbook with great layout and design exercises that can easily be adapted for distance learning. From Truths to Tools covers basic historic layout tools, many of which are still used in the trades, and makes the linkage between the tools and the mathematical truths behind them. Again, each chapter can make a good distance learning exercise.
The Sector and the Scale of Chords are two great tools that “teach how Geometry was used by builders through human history.” All you need are a pencil, paper, compass, and a straightedge.
If you go to Jim and George’s website and e-mail them, they are happy to share free downloads of their pamphlets about these tools, as well as their paper templates, with folks doing “homeschooling.” Homeschooling Page
French’s Mechanical Drawing
The Applied Geometry Exercises from French’s Mechanical Drawing are timeless. These were written in 1911 and a version of the book is still in use.