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Summing Up: September 5, 2013

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September 5, 2013


Gojak_Linda-100x140Partnering with Parents
Too often when a student struggles with mathematics, a parent comments, “I was never very good at math either.” While that may be true, the need for our students to be successful in mathematics is more urgent than at any time in recent history. In this era of focus on college, career, and life readiness, engaging parents is critical to the success of students from prekindergarten through high school. Read more.


mathclassNew Position Statement Supporting the Common Core
NCTM recently issued a position statement that identifies five factors that are critical to realizing the potential of the Common Core. “The Common Core State Standards offer the prospect for all students to encounter the same high expectations and have the same opportunities,” said NCTM President Linda Gojak. Read more in this news release and blog post.

Prepare for the New School Year
How do you help your students demonstrate mathematical proficiency that meets the learning expectations of the Common Core State Standards? Whether you’re looking for CCSSM-related publications and the latest research briefs or a new poster for your classroom, you’ll find it with NCTM’s Pinterest boards. We have several theme-based collections for you to make use of throughout the year. It’s the perfect way to flag ideas or professional development opportunities for later use—so go ahead, start pinning!

Illuminations Welcomes You Back to School
Welcome back to school! Illuminations’ Algebra Tiles lets you practice solving, substituting, expanding, and factoring for free. Use it in a math rotation or as part of a wrap up to your lesson plan. We’ve even created a tutorial to show you what our applet is all about.

MTE-176x101Contribute to Mathematics Teacher Educator

NCTM’s joint online journal with the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators aims to build and strengthen practitioner knowledge related to the preparation and support of mathematics teachers. Are you interested in contributing? Describe effective ways or tools to influence teacher knowledge and practice. Or perhaps discuss improvements in a methods course, with recommendations for policy and practice. Submit your manuscript.


Common Core Math Encourages Critical Thinking

The Common Core State Standards continue to create national debate. Some critics say the new math standards allow for wrong answers and undercut critical thinking. NCTM disagrees with these critics. “One of the things we learned from research, and there’s a lot of it out there, is that kids do not necessarily learn from the algorithmic method,” Linda Gojak, president of NCTM said, adding, “The assessment is that it is more about kids making sense of what they are learning instead of memorizing a step-by-step process.” 

Dividers_SU_Other News

STEMprogramTeenLife’s 2013 Guide to STEM Programs
It is no surprise that innovative technology is the wave of the future—and that science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) careers currently have the best entry-level salaries for college grads—estimated to be 30% more than average. TeenLife’s 2013 “Guide to STEM Programs” includes a comprehensive list of STEM programs, schools, and colleges, as well as many organizations that promote increased STEM education and teen involvement. Check it out! 


It’s Back-to-School Time!
NCTM wants to help you kick off the new school year right! We are offering a promotion of $10 off full membership for new members and $15 off full membership for renewing members. As a member, you’ll stay up to date on all our efforts to advocate for mathematics funding and support for mathematics teachers. Use code BTSU813—and hurry; this offer ends September 9. NCTM membership.


14405High-Yield Routines
Today’s classrooms are full of routines. Although we often think of routines as being used for organization, they can also be used to enhance instruction. High-Yield Routines for Grades K–8 discusses seven easily implemented mathematical routines that may be used effectively at a variety of grade levels and with a variety of mathematical content. It also includes ideas for infusing mathematics into the nonmathematical routines that take time away from instruction. Use code YIELD25 for 25% off for members and 15% off for nonmembers. Learn more.


Call for Nominations: NCTM 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award
NCTM’s Mathematics Education Trust (MET) is currently accepting nominations for its Lifetime Achievement Award, awarded to members who have exhibited a lifetime of achievement in mathematics education at the national level. Consider nominating an exceptional colleague who is an NCTM member and who over a lifetime has contributed significantly to mathematics education through leadership, teaching, and service. Award recipients will be announced in Summing Up, and the award will be presented at the New Orleans Annual Meeting and Exposition. Past awardees have come from all points on the education compass and beyond—elementary teachers, university professors, authors of textbooks, editors of influential series, leaders in curriculum development, researchers, conference speakers, and even a patent holder. Submit a nomination packet, postmarked no later than November 8.


Final Week to Save Up to $80 in Baltimore
Don’t miss the opportunity to join us in Baltimore for the first of NCTM’s three 2013 Regional Conferences and Expositions, our signature fall math education events. More than 200 sessions and workshops and dynamic exhibits await you in Baltimore, and if you register by September 13, you’ll save up to $80 with our early-bird registration rate. Can’t make it to Baltimore? Join us at one of our other 2013 Regional Conferences and Expositions in Las Vegas or Louisville.


Capitol ReportAs classrooms fill up with students and teachers and football games replace swim meets, Congress will return to Washington, D.C., and the business of legislating September 9. Although foreign policy developments will require debate and decisions immediately, eventually Congress will have to turn to the matter of federal spending, since the current fiscal year ends September 30—which is not so very far away. Read more in the Capitol Report.

Because Congress is in recess during the month of August, we are providing you with updates on specific education policy issues that Congress and the administration are currently addressing. Read in-depth about early childhood education and the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act.


How to Learn Math

A new course is now available on Stanford’s free online platform. “EDUC115N: How to Learn Math” is a short intervention designed to change students’ relationships with math. Concepts include knocking down the myths about math, mindset, conceptual learning, appreciating algebra and more. There are no prerequisites. This free course is open until September 27. More info

wwtbmNational Math Contest

Are you looking for a chance to reward and showcase your best math students—and the chance to share the winning contestant’s $10,000 award with your math department? The American Mathematical Society is again conducting its national contest for high school students, “Who Wants to Be a Mathematician,” with a top prize of $5,000 for the winning student and $5,000 for the math department of that student’s school. There is no fee to participate. The first-round qualifying test is tentatively scheduled for September 14–27. Learn more.

Teacher Resources from the Library of Congress
With the start of the school year, be sure to check out the Library of Congress website and its teacher resources. The library is one of the world’s largest sources of free primary sources, with more than 30 million items available through easy searching. Classroom materials are searchable by topics such Common Core, state content standards, and more. Read more.