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Summing Up: September 19, 2013

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September 19, 2013


blocksFrom Classroom to Coach: One Teacher’s Journey
In addition to differentiating and developing curriculum, a teacher’s transition to coaching in an early childhood setting involves a complex blend of mentoring teachers, teaching students, and discovering resources. Read more in this month’s free preview article from Teaching Children Mathematics (TCM). If you don’t subscribe to TCM, remember to check it out along with all of NCTM’s school journals each month for a new free article.

100+ Pins for the Classroom
Looking for classroom-ready lesson plans and activities? Check out Illuminations’ new Pinterest account. Our pin boards are filled with popular ideas and games, and are divided into four grade levels: pre-K–2, grades 3–5, middle school, and high school. Each collection includes the top 10 resources for that category. Pin today!

The First Days of School and All Year Long
Take notes. Know your discipline and classroom management strategies. Take a leadership role in mathematics by offering support. These are just some of the many classroom tips to consider as you embark on a new school year. Plan now for a successful school year by forming good habits from the start! Read more.

funnyfaceFunny Face Contest: A Formative Assessment
Last month, NCTM released a new position statement on formative assessment. Continue your quest to learn more about this topic in an article in Mathematics Teacher about allowing students to learn mathematics conceptually through explorations and to examine mathematics in real-world contexts.

Common Core Promotes Critical Thinking

Past president of NCTM Cathy Seeley says, “It’s much too early to judge the Common Core, other than to say it’s a good enough framework, and improvement can happen, and with a lot of states using it, it means the likelihood of getting high-quality materials and good tests goes up.” KETK

Nontraditional Math Results in Higher Test Scores
For many years, studies have shown that American students score significantly lower than students worldwide in mathematics achievement, ranking 25th among students from 34 countries. Now, researchers from the University of Missouri have found that high school students in the United States achieve higher scores on a standardized mathematics test if they study from a curriculum known as integrated mathematics. The study was recently published in NCTM’s Journal for Research in Mathematics Education. 


SuccessStartSuccess from the Start
You just signed your first contract to teach secondary math. You’re excited, but you probably have many questions and concerns: What do I do when students don’t “get” the lesson? How can I help students who struggle with math that they supposedly learned in elementary school? Find answers to these questions and more in Success from the Start: Your First Years Teaching Secondary Mathematics, a new book for beginning teachers of secondary mathematics. Based on classroom observations and interviews with seasoned and beginning teachers, this book offers valuable suggestions to improve your teaching and your students’ opportunities to learn.

Be Social!
A professor of mathematics education recently described Success from the Start as “an upbeat and useful book for being a great mathematics teacher.” She continues, “Just as in mathematics we connect concrete situations to abstract concepts, Success from the Start uses concrete classroom vignettes and examples to make important big ideas of effective mathematics teaching visible and doable.” Join us on Facebook for your chance to win one of 10 free copies of this book!


METvideoGrant Funding Available
Did you know? Grants, scholarships, and awards are available to NCTM members through NCTM’s Mathematics Education Trust. Funding ranges from $1,200 to $24,000 and can be used for conferences, workshops, and seminars; research and in-service training in mathematics coursework; or professional development activities. The deadline for the next cycle of grants is November 8. Watch a video from a past recipient and apply today!

Attending an NCTM Regional Conference and Exposition This Fall?

Stop by the MET booth at any of NCTM’s 2013 Regional Conferences, and learn how MET can help you achieve your professional development goals or implement an innovative project or program in your classroom by applying for one of the many grants, awards, and scholarships available only to NCTM members. We look forward to meeting you in person!

  • Baltimore – Halls A and B, Baltimore Convention Center
  • Las Vegas – Pavilion, Rio Hotel
  • Louisville – Exhibit Hall 2D, Kentucky International Convention Center


Balt2013Baltimore Early-Bird Registration Extended
“Fraction Sense—How Do We Get There?” “Implementing Mathematical Practices: Does Your Classroom Look Like This?” and “Incredible Math Tasks! Developing the Standards for Mathematical Practice” are just a taste of the more than 200 presentations that will be offered at NCTM’s Regional Conference and Exposition in Baltimore. We’ve extended the early-bird registration deadline to Friday, September 20. Save up to $80—register now!

Formative Assessment Workshop—Final Week to Register
This is the last week to register for NCTM’s preconference workshop “Using Formative Assessment for Student Learning,” to be held on October 16 in Baltimore. Designed for educators of grades 3–8, this preconference workshop will give you the models and strategies you need to successfully evaluate student learning in order to guide future instruction and move student learning forward. On-site registration is not available; space is limited. Register today.


Capitol ReportCongress has returned to Washington, D.C., and has hit the ground running with loud debates and calls for immediate action. As widely reported in the press, foreign policy has taken center stage in the short-term, but federal spending debates are looming. Read more in the Capitol Report.

Last week, the Center for American Progress released a new report that examines how the design of professional learning opportunities must support the capacity of teachers to teach and enhance student learning through the design and implementation of performance assessments aligned with the Common Core, and includes specific recommendations for states, districts, and schools. Read more in the Legislative Update.


New MOOC on CCSSM Equipartitioning Learning Trajectory

Registration is now open for a new Mathematics Learning Trajectory Massive Open Online Course for Educators (MOOC-Ed). The seven-week course, from October 7 through November 25, is designed as professional development for anyone involved in mathematics education and in implementing the K–8 Common Core State Standards for Mathematics at the classroom, school, or district level. The first course, “The Equipartitioning Learning Trajectory: a K–5 Foundation for Rational Number Reasoning,” examines how equipartitioning, grounded in fair sharing activities that create equal-sized groups or parts, provides a robust foundation for students’ conceptual understanding of division, multiplication, fraction, and ratio. Learn more in an informational video and register by visiting the course site.

ChampionsNominate a Connected Educator

In honor of Connected Educator Month in October, the White House will host a “Champions of Change” event to celebrate local education leaders whose creative approaches in using technology to enhance learning serve as examples of what we should strive for in every classroom, for every child. These leaders will be invited to the White House to celebrate their accomplishments and showcase their actions to support more connected schools and students. Help identify a standout local education leader; the deadline is Friday, September 20. Nominate today!

mathwayNew Mathways Project
Accelerate student success and completion through implementation of processes, strategies, and structures built around three mathematics pathways and a supporting student success course. The “Quantitative Reasoning” pathway is currently in development and seeking qualified authors. Interested? Questions? E-mail for the application packet; the deadline is September 30. Learn more.

Give It Your Best Shot!

Get your camera and your photographic eye ready for the newly announced International Year of Statistics (Statistics2013) photo contest. Contest organizers are seeking high-quality photos that effectively illustrate the impact of statistics. Your submitted image must be an original photo taken by you and tell a story about how statistics advances the well-being of people in your country or our global society. Winners will receive a cash prize. This new competition—organized by continent—is for secondary school students, grades 7–12, around the world. The deadline is November 1. More info