My name is Kanchan Chellani; and, I am currently a math teacher at New Milford High School. I am a strong believer in making the learning process fun, interactive, and meaningful for students. I earned my Bachelor's degree from Villanova University in Business Administration and worked at JPMorgan Chase as a financial analyst for seven years upon graduation. I realized soon after that a career in finance was not for me but rather my passion was to become a mathematics educator. As a result, I obtained my post-baccalaureate teacher certification in secondary education as well as my Masters in Curriculum and Instruction from Caldwell College.
To engage students in my classroom, I have utilized a variety of tools to help me develop an interactive, student-centered learning environment. Through the use of technology, collaborative learning exercises, and teaching mathematical concepts in the real-world and interdisciplinary context, I have managed to successfully work towards creating this desired positive and energetic blended learning environment. Some of the many methods I have employed in my daily instruction include integrating SMART Board interactive review games and videos to introduce and/or reinforce mathematical concepts, assigning digital content as homework so students develop a working knowledge of the topic before coming into class, communicating with students and having them communicate with each other both inside and outside of class via learning management systems such as Edmodo, using a variety of smart phone apps to make the learning experience more relevant and hands-on for students, and incorporating case studies that involve the use of relevant technologies such as Google Docs and provide students with the opportunity to understand the significance of the material taught and develop essential skill sets to succeed in today’s workplace.
Image credit: http://catlintucker.com/2010/12/blended-learning-demystified/
Although the concept of transitioning from a teacher-centered learning environment to a student-centered learning environment seemed straightforward, my quest to do so was quite challenging. For example, because many videos and online resources on mathematical topics had been posted online, it was time-consuming to filter through them to find quality digital content to utilize in class. Additionally, because a wide range of web tools and apps exist, it was difficult to determine which ones would be effective in enhancing the learning experience for my students. However, after MUCH experimentation, research, and of course practice with the blended learning classroom, I had finally figured out the right concoction as well as the types of digital content to assign to reap the benefits of this instructional approach. These experiences led to the creation of my blog and website Learn Math Easily, which provide mathematics educators with the tools, resources, and knowledge needed to make blending their classrooms a much easier transition.
I have received the following recognitions for effectively creating a blending learning environment in my classroom:
NBC New York
CBS New York