February 4, 2014
Teaching to Win
This February is a month of recognizing accomplishments and achievements including the Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics. So what does this have to do with teaching mathematics? Much has been written on the psychology of playing not to lose vs. playing to win. Although the context for this work is usually sports or success in the business world, I am intrigued about the psychology of playing to win as I think about its implications for teaching mathematics. Read more.
Math and the Winter Olympics
The 2014 Winter Olympics kick off Friday! Originally, the winter and summer Olympics were held in the same calendar year, but since 1992, these games have been held in different years. The winter Olympic Games have been held every four years since 1924, except when they were suspended from 1936 to 1948 and when they were held only two years apart in 1992 and 1994. Get in the spirit with NCTM’s Olympic-themed Student Explorations in Mathematics.
Add Us to Your Circle
NCTM Illuminations, home to more than 800 free math resources, is now on Google+. Add us to your circle and stay up-to-date with our newest apps and lesson plans for the classroom. Love our math games and ideas? Be sure to give us a review. Join the conversation today!
Share with MTMS
Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School (MTMS) wants you to share your ideas and classroom-tested activities for grades 5–9 that explore statistics and probability. Submit your manuscript by January 6, 2015. What effective methods help students to understand the difference between statistics and probability? In what ways can technology be used effectively to enhance student learning about statistics and probability? More info
New Common Core Website
Too many American students lack the skills needed for 21st-century jobs. The Common Core State Standards are meeting this challenge by preparing students for college, career, and beyond. Help protect one of the most significant school improvements in our history by visiting a new website that collects and presents extensive information about the Common Core, including content resources and advocacy materials.
Practice PARCC Sample Test Questions
Teachers in 18 states and the District of Columbia have new resources to help them prepare their students for upcoming field tests. The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) has posted sample test items for every grade on the testing platform students will use when taking the field test later this spring. Learn more.
Science of the Olympic Games
The National Science Foundation and NBC Learn have partnered to release a 10-part video collection that delves into the mathematics, physics, engineering, chemistry, and design behind the world’s foremost sporting event. Running about five minutes in length, each video features a university scientist explaining a selected scientific principle, while current Olympians describe how these principles apply to their events. Check it out!
Spotlight Shines on Elementary Math
The Education Week Spotlight on elementary math is a collection of articles handpicked by Education Week editors for their insights on using research-based methods to teach fractions, understanding how early spatial skills influence math learning, identifying gender as a key factor in math instruction, and fostering STEM skills in young learners. Receive seven articles in a PDF—download yours today!
Digital Learning Day
Created by the Alliance for Excellent Education in 2012, Digital Learning Day recognizes schools and school districts that use effective applications of education technology to support teachers, improve learning, and help students achieve at their highest potential. As you make your plans to host your own Digital Learning Day activities and events, take advantage of NCTM Illuminations resources! We hope you’ll also sign up to participate in the Digital Learning Day national webcasts and virtual conference. This year, live events will take place from Washington, D.C., to computer screens across the country. More info
Student Privacy Protected under the Common Core
Over the last several months, some concerns have been raised about whether states’ transition to the consortia assessments will create new requirements for states to provide student information to the U.S. Department of Education (USED) or any agency of the federal government. Each of the chiefs from states participating in either Smarter Balanced or PARCC signed a letter to confirm that the consortia will not share any personally identifiable information about K–12 students with USED or any federal agency. More info
MET Legacy Series: Mary P. Dolciani Halloran
Mary P. Dolciani Halloran (1923–1985) is remembered for the great impact she had on students and for her professionalism in the mathematics community. Eileen L. Poiani presented a tribute to Professor Dolciani at Hunter College saying, “If I were limited to just one word to describe Dr. Mary Patricia Dolciani, that word would be ‘enthusiastic.’” Read about Dolciani’s legacy and learn more about the most recent recipient of the Teacher Professional Development Grant for Grades 6–8 Teachers, supported by the Mary P. Dolciani Fund.
Helping Future Teachers Succeed
Do you know a prospective teacher? NCTM’s student membership is available for a limited time at a special rate of $10 off. All for as little as $32 per year—more than 50 percent off the full individual membership—you can receive all the benefits. Just mention code PTSB13 by February 15. Not a member yourself? Let us thank you by offering $10 off a full individual membership; mention code PTSBM13. Thanks for helping us to reach students now, while they are eligible for student rates!
Registration Extended for Common Core Institutes
NCTM has extended the registration for the 2014 NCTM Interactive Institute Winter Professional Development Series—Cutting to the “Common Core”—for one more week. With so many in-depth sessions, amazing speakers, and valuable networking opportunities for Pre-K–12 teachers and school leaders, you won’t want to miss this event. Register now to get the tools and resources you need to successfully align your teaching with the Common Core State Standards. Don’t delay—registration closes on February 7!
Assessment & Interventions in Math Education
Join us on April 9 for one of our in-depth preconference workshops at the 2014 NCTM Annual Meeting & Exposition. Designed for mathematics educators of grades 3–8, these workshops will help you master either formative assessment or multi-tiered systems of support—but there’s more. Plan to continue learning April 9–12 and grab the early-bird discount on Annual Meeting & Exposition registration to save up to $80.
Problem Solving with the Common Core
NCTM’s four volumes in the Implementing the Common Core State Standards through Mathematical Problem Solving series illuminate a crucial link between problem solving and the Common Core State Standards. The books provide teachers with dozens of problems that they can use as is, adapt for their classrooms, or be inspired by while creating related problems on other topics. The kindergarten–grade 2, grades 6–8, and high school volumes are now available, and the grades 3–5 volume will be published April 2014. NCTM members can save 25 percent on these and all NCTM publications with the code SUM25; offer expires February 28.
Final Call! 2014 Montenegro Conference
The Mathematics Education for the Future Project welcomes final proposals for its 12th International Conference. “The Future of Mathematics Education in a Connected World” will be held September 21–26 at the Hunguest Hotel Sun Resort in Herceg Novi, Montenegro. For all conference details and updates, visit here.
The president’s fifth State of the Union address focused on income disparity and a desire to give more Americans more opportunities. The speech had wide-ranging ideas on how to do that, and education ideas figured prominently. The president’s first words after salutations were, “Today in America, a teacher spent extra time with a student who needed it, and did her part to lift America’s graduation rate to its highest level in more than three decades.” Capitol Report
The president and first lady met with presidents of more than 80 colleges and universities in an effort to increase college opportunities for low-income students. At the summit, the president outlined more than 100 new commitments to expand college opportunity, and the leaders of higher education in attendance were asked to commit to new actions in one of the crucial areas for improving opportunities for college. Legislative Update