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Mathematical Thinking through Web Programming - Making HTML pages

Dennis DeTurck

Phase II: Making HTML pages with links and pictures,
using Web-based calculators, and examining source code

As with Phase I, students engage in two different kinds of activity during Phase II. In the first, students write their own simple webpages. They learn to handle text, links and images. Usually there are a few HTML aficionados in the class who can serve as consultants to the other students. This activity usually takes up very little class time, since the students already know how to edit and post webpages. There are about half a dozen HTML tags they need, and then they are directed to the many sources of HTML information on the Web. The usual assignment for this part of the course is for the students to make a moderately interesting web page. The page should say something about them, and it should also contain a link to some interesting mathematical item on the Web. (We always get links to the Math Forum and to some part of the MAA web pages). A second pass through the webpage creation phase gives students the opportunity to add background and foreground images to their pages.

The other Phase II activity involves studying the source code for some of the games that we played in Phase I and at the code for the several calculators that we used for our mathematical work in the course. We often spend half an hour in each of several classes discussing in general terms how a few of these pages work, so that students get an idea of how programs are conceptualized and then actualized. The game programs were mentioned in the Section 2. Some of the calculators are

Dennis DeTurck, "Mathematical Thinking through Web Programming - Making HTML pages," Convergence (October 2004)