A new podcast exploring the importance of mathematics and effective teaching methods was launched earlier this month by a University of Winnipeg professor.
It’s also a great listen for teachers, for education students, and really anybody who’s interested in education, math, or teaching math.
Dr. Anna Stokke
Dr. Anna Stokke, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, says the Chalk & Talk podcast is for anyone interested in education. It was funded through the UWinnipeg Foundation’s Knowledge Mobilization Community Impact Grant.
The inspiration for this project came after Dr. Stokke was awarded the 3M National Teaching Fellowship in 2021, which is Canada’s most prestigious recognition of excellence in teaching and educational leadership at the post-secondary level. After meeting with the nine other recipients during a summit, they decided to do a joint podcast.
“I learned from that joint project that I could actually make my own podcast,” Dr. Stokke recalled. “Parents, teachers, and my students ask me things about teaching all the time, so I thought I could do a podcast and talk to people about teaching and education.”
Her first guest on the podcast was author, playwright, mathematician, and social activist Dr. John Mighton, who was recognized by UWinnipeg with an Honorary Doctor of Science in 2019.
He’s also the founder of JUMP Math, which is an award-winning charitable organization that believes all children are capable of rising to their full potential through an understanding and appreciation of math.
“The reason I chose him as my first guest was because he was an inspiration for me getting involved in math education advocacy 12 years ago,” she said. “He’s had a huge impact on my career.”
Dr. Stokke says they talked about a wide range of topics, including his role in the movie Good Will Hunting and his book The Myth of Ability, which looks at the idea that people underestimate their potential in math or think they are unable to learn math when anyone can learn if they’re taught porpely.
“We talked about some of the best ways to teach math and some of the myths that are out there,” Dr. Stokke said. “There are a lot of myths about the best ways to teach math, so it’s a really interesting conversation.”
Her second episode, which was just released, features an interview with international researcher, speaker, and cognitive psychologist Dr. Paul Kirschner, who is an expert on designing effective instructional programs.
She says the response to the podcast has been outstanding and it has already surpassed her expectations, as it has racked up more than 350 downloads from listeners around the world.
Because the podcast isn’t intended for a specialized audience, Dr. Stokke hopes to reach a wide variety of people.
“Education impacts everyone, so if you’re a parent and have kids in school, this would be a good podcast to listen to,” she said. “It’s also a great listen for teachers, for education students, and really anybody who’s interested in education, math, or teaching math.”