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October 2006, Volume 100, Issue 3


Curriculum Focal Points for Pre-K–Grade 8 Mathematics: A Quest for Coherence

An introduction to the topic of the NCTM's "Curriculum Focal Points for Prekindergraten through Grade 8 Mathematics: A Quest for Coherence," including the need for the focal points, what they are, how they should be used, and how they are related to the Principles and Standards for School Mathematics. The purpose for the Curriculum Focal Points is to provide leadership in the discussion about important mathematical topics at the pre-K-8 level.

Escape to a New Dimension: A Journey through Space with a Square, a Cube, and a Tesseract
Dane Camp
A play designed around an imaginary conversation between geometric objects, summarizes various approaches to visualizing a tesseract (a.k.a. hypercube—a four-dimensional analog of a cube).

Solving Simultaneous Equations: Getting More from Geometry
Gerald Gannon, Harris Shultz
How a geometric insight can add to the richness of our students' experiences when they first encounter the solutions to two equations in two unknowns. Includes sample graphs.

Linear and Quadratic Change: A Problem from Japan
Blake Peterson
This article addresses research on the student teaching process in Japan, during which most lessons involved rich mathematics problems. Compares one of these problems taught in Japan to the same lesson taught to a US Algebra 2 class involving linear and quadratic equations. Includes student work.