Eureka and Middle School Math · Remote/Digital Learning · UDL in Practice · Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

Desmos CardSort: the intersection of math and vocabulary

I’ve recently written about how I’ve used the CardSort option in Desmos to create a vocabulary game for science, pushing the uses of Desmos beyond just math. There are plenty of electronic or online options for creating flashcards, but I like the way Desmos allows me to use the Dashboard, allows me to share with collaborators, and allows me to mix images, text, and math type, all in one.

In looking at our recent unit on surface area, I decided that Desmos would be a good fit/tool to work with students to review vocabulary for an upcoming assessment. Students struggle with prism versus pyramid, often, in my opinion, because of how close the terms are in their pronunciation and the fact that they are named using the same base. It’s just all too close for many students! So the first CardSort I created was to identify prism versus pyramid, using a combination of images and descriptions:

I love using the “check answer” capacity on Desmos–students greatly benefit from the instant feedback it provides, as well as redistributing the responsibility for verifying their work onto the students, not teachers:

The second CardSort I made for prisms and pyramids asks students to collect a series of cards for each, with an image, a matching numerical equation, and a matching unit/label (thanks for my co-teaching, Jim Hazlett, for this idea!).

I added a “Not Needed” category to this sort to emphasize the fact that some labels, with linear units, were not applicable for surface area:

Even when a set is incomplete, the check answer option gives students positive feedback on their work thus far, as well as provisioning them with a link to a teacher-created resource:

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