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Use of knowledge of Geology and Math into teaching in the classroom

  • 1.  Use of knowledge of Geology and Math into teaching in the classroom

    Posted 04-24-2024 17:40:00
    Edited by Chamila Ranaweera 04-24-2024 17:43:01

    Hello all,

    This is a great discussion. My education of dual MS in Geology and Mathematics as well as coming from Sri Lanka has always helped me in my teaching over the years. I use some ways to connect with my students with their majors with some examples or discussions.

     In Gen-ed classes often students ask why we learn these math? Do we use them? I always tell them that I never imagined my self to be a math professor when I was in college. But, here I am. The reason I could make my switch is the way I analyze a problem, solve them and come to a conclusion. It is a process. Math is the subject that teaches you those skills. I ask them do you think you need them in your major/career to be successful? Then they begin to realize yes, that's true. Later in the semester when they get their surveying projects or some other engineering or physics projects they come and show me their work sometimes ask for some ideas. I think giving them the sense of the value of seeing things differently is helpful to realize the value of mathematical skills.

    Other important skill I use in my teaching is I always like to show them some visuals, such as drawings, or illustrations with the given information. This skill comes from my training of drawing maps, and geological features I guess. Specially these days it is hard for us to make our students use pen and paper for even taking the notes.

    I am always into active learning and I think it is because that I used to learn by working with samples, or going into the field. This semester in a nice sunny day a student asked me can we go out to learn today. May be I will think of this in future lesson plan!

    Chamila Ranaweera,

    James Madison University, VA

    Chamila Ranaweera
    Mathematics Lecturer
    James Madison University