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Savvy Calculator Helps Kids ‘Get’ Math Like Never Before


The TI-Nspire CX calculator uses a full-color display and 3D graphing to help students grasp math like never before.

While similar in many respects to the existing successful line of Texas Instruments Nspire handhelds, the CX is the first in the line that makes use of a full-color display.

The display is designed to allow students to better observe patterns and make connections between math and science concepts and the real world. With the device’s new 3D graphing capabilities, students also can explore concepts from multiple points of view to develop deeper conceptual understanding.

“The TI-Nspire CX handheld exponentially changes how we can teach mathematics,” said Carlo Trafficante, the first educator to pilot the calculator in a classroom.

A calculus, integrated algebra and geometry, and advanced math teacher at Austintown Fitch High School in Youngstown OH, Trafficante added that the device’s display capabilities enhance his ability to explain key mathematical ideas to his students.

“With the addition of color as a key learning cue and with 3D graphing, students can better visualize and interact with class exercises,” Trafficante said. “I can emphasize different parts of an equation with color, so the charts, tables, graphics and even photographs that I import into my lessons have more impact and relevance, and enable students to make the important connections among all of these representations.”

Research from the University of Washington and the City University of New York shows that when students are engaged and actively participate in their own learning, they progress faster and further in understanding mathematics and science. Graphing handhelds have been shown to foster student engagement and encourage participation in their own learning.

“At Texas Instruments we work with educators to develop new math and science learning technology to help them better engage students in mastering key concepts,” said Melendy Lovett, president of Texas Instruments Education Technology. “The TI-Nspire CX handheld and software update is not only a graphing calculator; it is special-purpose technology created to give teachers new ways to reach students and achieve learning breakthroughs.”

The calculator boasts a 16-bit, 320 x 240 pixel high-resolution color display. With this display, teachers and students can see sharp, full-color images and animations. The device also offers a slim profile, sleek design and rechargeable battery.

The TI-Nspire CX handheld is permitted for use on the SAT, AP, PSAT/NSMQT, IB and ACT college entrance exams, as well as many state standardized tests.


Article by Jason Tomaszewski, EducationWorld Associate Editor
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