Lifelong Learning Programme

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Title of the Experience
Programming to understand
Name of the teacher
Maria Olivotto
Country where it took place
School typology
High Secondary School
Thematic Area
Experience typology
Type of contact
Description of the Experience
Solving linear equations, the main difficulty for students is to discuss different kind of solutions, when they have parametric equations. They usually understand without any problem the numeric equations, but when solutions depend on a parameter they often are not able to consider all the chances and treat only a specific case.
To reduce this kind of problem I made them work with spreadsheet software (i.e. Excel, OpenOffice) to implement a file that solves immediately any linear equation when numbers are inserted in the appropriate cells.
The main point the students had to work on was to anticipate any possible data that could be inserted in the cells and make sure the program would give an appropriate answer for any of them.
This meant students had understood all the differences between different cases (determinate, indeterminate, impossible) and what leads to each of them. If some case was not considered in the program I could easily show them that there was a problem in their project inserting specific numbers in the cells.
The experience gave good results, since in the following lessons I found out a remarkable improvement in solving parametric equations.
This kind of experience can be done also for other topics (i.e. Systems of linear equations).

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Dissemination Seminar in Florence

31 October 2015 The seminar has been held in ITIS “A. Meucci” one of the schools involved within Goerudio project activities. Its main aim was to promote the results of the project toward a broad sample of stakeholders even overcrossing the number of people directly involved in the production of project outcomes. This purpose has been totally achieved especially thanks to the participation of students and teachers coming from different schools or from other classes instead of those ones directly involved within the project activities.