Newsletters | Newsletter Archive BLOSSOMS What's New? May 2012

May 2012

What's New?

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New MIT Lesson Explores the Power of Exponentials
ExponentialsExponentials. Geometric growth. Geometric decay. What do these terms mean? Well, there are formulas. A teacher can present them and students can dutifully memorize them. But this BLOSSOMS video takes an entirely different approach. Three 1st-year MIT doctoral students let their hair down, go in costume and act out various exponential situations. They show dramatically the might of exponentials. One gets incredible growth or decay. But acting out scenes does not mean there is no math. They present all the mathematics that one needs to understand exponentials. Have fun with this one here!

First BLOSSOMS Lesson from Lebanon Examines the Theory behind Social Networking
Social NetworkingMIT BLOSSOMS partners at the American University of Beirut have created a video lesson that introduces students to algorithmic thinking through the use of a popular field in graph theory—social networking. By acting as nodes in a graph (i.e. people in a social network), students will experientially gain an understanding of graph theory terminology and distance in a graph. “Who Do You Know? The Theory Behind Social Networking” was created by Dr. F. Jordan Srour and Dr. George Turklyyah and is available in English.

Two Saudi Lessons Demonstrate Teaching across Disciplines
New VideosResearch has shown that students who learn the inter-relationship of how subjects relate in real-life make more inter-disciplinary connections for deeper learning. Two new lessons from the MIT-Saudi partnership aim to do just that – one relating math to art and the other relating math to the natural world. “Arabesque: Where Art Meets Mathematics” by Dr. Jawad Abuhlail is available in both an Arabic and English-subtitled version. “Why Beehive Honeycombs have a Hexagonal Shape” by Fatma Al-Qatani is also available in both versions.

The MIT Online Science, Technology, and Engineering Community (MOSTEC)
MOSTECMOSTEC is an online education and enrichment program, free of charge to students, that extends from the summer into the winter as students submit their college applications. MOSTEC serves to develop a cohort of students who are equipped to major successfully in technical disciplines. Students are supported by a staff of positive, enthusiastic, and like-minded role models with experience in science and engineering. Read more at:

Utah Teacher Wins What If ? Contest; Will Make BLOSSOMS Lesson

Mr. David Black of the Walden School of Liberal Arts, Provo, Utah, won the contest for his lesson plan, The Parallax Activity: Measuring the Distances to Nearby Stars, for students in grades 11-12. In August, he will film this as a BLOSSOMS lesson. Read more about the contest.

Watch for These New BLOSSOMS Lessons Coming Soon

Unlocking the Endocrine System
The Fibonacci Sequence

The Genetic Basis of Inheritance

Meet an MIT BLOSSOMS Video Teacher
Amer JouzAmer Jouz works as a software developer. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Computers and Information Systems from Aleppo University in Syria, specializing in Management Information Systems and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) design, development and implementation. He has created and implemented several business information systems. Watch his BLOSSOMS learning video, “Sorting Algorithms”, available in both Arabic and English subtitled versions.
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