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Middle School Resources: Culturally Relevant Teaching

Minority Students & English Language Learners

  • The Equity Principle through the Voices of African American Males
    A discussion of the Equity Principle through the experiences of seventh and eighth grade African American males who have been successful in math.
    Enhanced_Article_Logo-small Reflection Guide: Use this article for professional development.
  • Discovering Euler Circuits and Paths Through a Culturally Relevant Lesson
    This article describes a middle school discrete mathematics lesson that uses the context of catching crawfish to provide students with a hands-on experience related to Euler circuits and paths. The lesson promotes mathematical communication through the use of cooperative learning as well as connections between mathematics and the real world through the use of this context and discussions of other similar contexts.
  • Zero: A Special Case
    Students explore the origins, development and special properties of zero. They also learn some important historical lessons about mathematics. Includes activity sheets and references web sites.
  • Addressing Diversity in the Math Classroom with Cultural Artifacts
    This article describes a project done in middle school mathematics classes that addresses the learners' diversity and acknowledges their heritage, multiple abilities, and learning styles. The project, with the use of cultural artifacts and creative stories, enables one to teach and assess mathematics in an imaginative and creative way that both respects diversity and extends the understanding to a personal context.
  • Mathematical Notations and Procedures of Recent Immigrant Students
    This article describes some differences in representations of mathematical concepts and procedures of recent immigrants. It discusses considerations for success of recent immigrants.
  • Probability Games from Diverse Cultures
    This article introduces and explains probability games from diverse cultures. Activities are described and teacher-ready materials are included.
  • Magic with Mayan Math
    This article provides activities that merge two fascinating mathematical topics: the Mayan system of numeration and magic squares.
  • Issues with Language: Teacher Insights from Math Lessons in Chinese
    A professional development experience is described in which teachers from schools with Latino student populations participated in two mathematics lessons taught in Chinese. The goal was to allow the teachers to experience linguistic challenges similar to those that many ELL students face. In addition, the article also discusses teachers' reflections and insights about teaching ELL students and aspects about learning mathematics in a second language.
  • Limited-English Proficient (LEP) Students and Math Understanding
    This article describes problematic issues that teachers and LEP students encounter, effective approaches for teaching mathematics to LEP students, and recommended learning strategies for LEP students.
  • Focused Strategies for Middle-Grades Math Vocabulary Development
    Article identifies several challenges that students face in learning mathematics language and provides specific strategies to address each type of difficulty. Includes a table of common, mathematically challenging words.
  • "Weigh" to Go! Exploring Mathematical Language
    This article focuses on the dynamics of language in the context of mathematics. The interaction of everyday words and specialized mathematics vocabulary impacts students' development of mathematical understanding.
  • Using Student Contributions and Multiple Representations to Develop
    As an alternative to using vocabulary lists to introduce students to mathematical language, this article describes a way to introduce and use mathematical language in mathematics classrooms that draws on multiple representations and student language.

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