WCYDWT Live: Boat In The River

I haven’t found an effective format for online professional development using WCYDWT-style problems. (Nothing, anyway, that compared to three hours of face time with the Kannapolis teachers last month.) So I’m trying something new and looking for twenty volunteers to get an advance look at my newest WCYDWT problem tomorrow afternoon and run through it with me as math students in a DimDim room.

Total time commitment: 45 minutes. I’ll post the problem and the webinar results shortly thereafter.

If you’re into it, leave a comment using an e-mail address where I can reach you. Feel free to push it past twenty. If any participants are absent or late, I’ll start pushing invites out in the same order I received comments.

[Download Screencast, courtesy Jason Buell]

I'm Dan and this is my blog. I'm a former high school math teacher and current head of teaching at Desmos. More here.


  1. I would like to attend. Tomorrow is teacher’s first working day. I think I will be in my room at 3:00 but not sure I can get through the firewall.

  2. I wish I could do it (we’ll be headed to the airport to fly to SF at that time).

    I’ll look forward to hearing about it!

  3. So I’ll send e-mails to everyone through Steven Peters at 2:50 PST today. Then at 3:00PM, I’ll send out e-mails to fill any available slots, starting with Anne Laskey. Thanks for helping me out here, team.

  4. Count me in-I’m hoping I have calculated correctly that this will happen at 6:00 p.m. Montreal time!

  5. East Coast! I’d love to join in I’d you decide to go with overcrowding or you have dropouts!

  6. For the record, I’d love to open this wider, but until DimDim proves itself as a professional development forum, I’m sticking with the free version, which limits to twenty participants. Thanks again for the interest.

  7. Looking forward to hearing the results.

    Hope it works out!

    If you could include a critical evaulation of the whole Dim Dim process that would be great for those
    not-so-techie-techie-enthusiasts such as myself.

  8. How do we access the archive? I didn’t really understand about the email instructions before, sorry!

  9. Feedback from dimdim session.

    I liked the initial idea. Brainstorm what question we wanted to answer.

    I also liked the the opportunity to “agree” on some values. Time to run up the up escalator and time to run down the stairs.

    I would have liked to then have had some time (more than a few minutes) to play around with the these values. I did not want to miss any of the dialogue and got distracted and never reached an answer.

    For an online training: Do the initial stuff. Take a break and prepare as much of a solution as possible. (Break out sessions using dimdim if you want small group work?) and then return with some wiki pages of work to show everyone.

    Thanks for your time Dan.

  10. I’m not particularly thrilled with the results of this conference, but we’ll try it a few more times before moving on to another format. Hope to see you in there next time.

  11. OK – neophytical type question here.

    I see tremendous possibilities for my physics class (9th grade – conceptual) in using clips like this. BUT … what’s the learning curve like?

    What do I need in order to be able to

    a) video the event – some form of ccd camera with video capabilities I’m sure
    b) and here is where I predict the asymptote begins to be noticeable … how does one combine 4 shots in one.

    I assume that the camera is tripod mounted and remains stationary between all 4 trials … but then how is it combined into one frame? Will I need a masters in video editing to pull it off. (btw … I’m a PC …. and I see that dan’s a mac)


  12. Honestly, the part I was proudest of here was thinking to use an iPod to keep time. That’s the top of the asymptote for me.

    Your other assumptions about how I shot this thing are right on. The final part, combining four plates into one, is more expensive than difficult. It’ll cost you $360 at Academic Superstore. I’ll have a tutorial up shortly so you can decide if this is a skill you’d like to pursue, invest in, etc.

  13. Can someone tell me where to find the “Dirt” problem. I’ve clicked every logical link, googled every relevant term I can think of and I can’t find the original clip/problem! Help! I’m feeling quite foolish (and out of the loop) right now!!!!

  14. Thanks, Dan. I didn’t stay in the discussion yesterday because I felt the spot would be better used by someone who had knowledge of the problem. Looking forward to seeing that one and future problem-solving ideas. They are really opening up avenues of creative thought for me and consequently, my future students.