My main work at our institute is to find ways on how to integrate technologyparticularly free software and Web 2.0 applications in teaching mathematics. Recently, I have been thinking of integrating Wolfram Alpha in teacher trainings, but I can’t yet justify to myself why (I don’t want to read the work of others yet).
Don’t get me wrong. Wolfram Alpha is a great tool — the first of its kind. You type your query and voila, all the related information pop up — graphs, numbers, tables, maps, and almost all the things that you need. Fantastic, but if a lesson ends in generating information from Wolfram Alpha, then it’s no different from using Google or Wikipedia — well a little different probably because of the presentation. I don’t want to let students use Wolfram Alpha just to get information; I want it to be a tool that would elicit thinking. » Read more