# Classroom Manipulative to Engage Students in Mathematical Modeling of Disease Spread: 1+1 = Achoo!

• Volume: 6, Issue: 6, page 215-226
• ISSN: 0973-5348

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## Abstract

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Infectious diseases ranging from the common cold to cholera affect our society physically, emotionally, ecologically, and economically. Yet despite their importance and impact, there remains a lack of effective teaching materials for epidemiology and disease ecology in K-12, undergraduate, and graduate curricula [2]. To address this deficit, we’ve developed a classroom lesson with three instructional goals: (1) Familiarize students on basic concepts of infectious disease ecology; (2) Introduce students to a classic compartmental model and its applications in epidemiology; (3) Demonstrate the application and importance of mathematical modeling as a tool in biology. The instructional strategy uses a game-based mathematical manipulative designed to engage students in the concepts of infectious disease spread. It has the potential to be modified for target audiences ranging from Kindergarten to professional schools in science, public health, policy, medical, and veterinarian programs. In addition, we’ve provided variations of the activity to enhance the transfer of fundamental concepts covered in the initial lesson to more complex concepts associated with vaccination and waning immunity. While 10 variations are presented here, the true number of directions in which the game might extend will only be limited by the imagination of its students [6].

## How to cite

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Gaff, H., Lyons, M., and Watson, G.. "Classroom Manipulative to Engage Students in Mathematical Modeling of Disease Spread: 1+1 = Achoo!." Mathematical Modelling of Natural Phenomena 6.6 (2011): 215-226. <http://eudml.org/doc/222267>.

@article{Gaff2011,
abstract = {Infectious diseases ranging from the common cold to cholera affect our society physically, emotionally, ecologically, and economically. Yet despite their importance and impact, there remains a lack of effective teaching materials for epidemiology and disease ecology in K-12, undergraduate, and graduate curricula [2]. To address this deficit, we’ve developed a classroom lesson with three instructional goals: (1) Familiarize students on basic concepts of infectious disease ecology; (2) Introduce students to a classic compartmental model and its applications in epidemiology; (3) Demonstrate the application and importance of mathematical modeling as a tool in biology. The instructional strategy uses a game-based mathematical manipulative designed to engage students in the concepts of infectious disease spread. It has the potential to be modified for target audiences ranging from Kindergarten to professional schools in science, public health, policy, medical, and veterinarian programs. In addition, we’ve provided variations of the activity to enhance the transfer of fundamental concepts covered in the initial lesson to more complex concepts associated with vaccination and waning immunity. While 10 variations are presented here, the true number of directions in which the game might extend will only be limited by the imagination of its students [6]. },
author = {Gaff, H., Lyons, M., Watson, G.},
journal = {Mathematical Modelling of Natural Phenomena},
keywords = {Infectious disease; mathematical modeling; education; manipulatives; infectious disease},
language = {eng},
month = {10},
number = {6},
pages = {215-226},
publisher = {EDP Sciences},
title = {Classroom Manipulative to Engage Students in Mathematical Modeling of Disease Spread: 1+1 = Achoo!},
url = {http://eudml.org/doc/222267},
volume = {6},
year = {2011},
}

TY - JOUR
AU - Gaff, H.
AU - Lyons, M.
AU - Watson, G.
TI - Classroom Manipulative to Engage Students in Mathematical Modeling of Disease Spread: 1+1 = Achoo!
JO - Mathematical Modelling of Natural Phenomena
DA - 2011/10//
PB - EDP Sciences
VL - 6
IS - 6
SP - 215
EP - 226
AB - Infectious diseases ranging from the common cold to cholera affect our society physically, emotionally, ecologically, and economically. Yet despite their importance and impact, there remains a lack of effective teaching materials for epidemiology and disease ecology in K-12, undergraduate, and graduate curricula [2]. To address this deficit, we’ve developed a classroom lesson with three instructional goals: (1) Familiarize students on basic concepts of infectious disease ecology; (2) Introduce students to a classic compartmental model and its applications in epidemiology; (3) Demonstrate the application and importance of mathematical modeling as a tool in biology. The instructional strategy uses a game-based mathematical manipulative designed to engage students in the concepts of infectious disease spread. It has the potential to be modified for target audiences ranging from Kindergarten to professional schools in science, public health, policy, medical, and veterinarian programs. In addition, we’ve provided variations of the activity to enhance the transfer of fundamental concepts covered in the initial lesson to more complex concepts associated with vaccination and waning immunity. While 10 variations are presented here, the true number of directions in which the game might extend will only be limited by the imagination of its students [6].
LA - eng
KW - Infectious disease; mathematical modeling; education; manipulatives; infectious disease
UR - http://eudml.org/doc/222267
ER -

## References

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1. G. L. Armstrong, L. A. Conn, Robert, W. Pinner. Trends in Infectious Disease Mortality in the United States During the 20th Century. JAMA, 281 (1999), 61-66.
2. C. A. Brewer, A. R. Berkowitz, P. Conrad, J. Porter, M. Waterman. Educating About Infectious Disease Ecology. In: Infectious Disease Ecology. R. S. Ostfeld, F. Keesing, V. T. Eviner (eds.), Princeton University Press, 2000, 448-466.
3. A. Crosby. America’s forgotten pandemic: the influenza of 1918 (2nd Ed). Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 2003.
4. A. M. Fendrick, A. S. Monto, B. Nightengale, M. Sarnes. The Economic Burden of Non-Influenza-Related Viral Respiratory Tract Infection in the United States. Arch Intern Med, 163 (2003), 487-494.
5. R. M. Gagne, K. L. Medsker. The Conditions of Learning: Training Applications. Harcourt Brace & Co. New York, New York, 1996.
6. H. Hethcote. A thousand and one epidemic models. In: Frontiers in Mathematical Biology, S. Levin (ed.), Lecture Notes in Biomathematics 100, Springer, Berlin, 1994, 504-515.
7. D. H. Jonassen. Integrating learning strategies into courseware to facilitate deeper processing. In: Instructional designs for microcomputer courseware. D. H. Jonassen (ed.), Erlbaum, Hillsdale, New Jersey, 1988, 151-182.
8. J. R. Jungck, H. D. Gaff and A. Weisstein. Mathematical Manipulative Models: “In Defense of Beanbag Biology”. CBE–Life Sciences Education, 9 (2010), 201-211.

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