February 2024 Practical Practices

Board “Best of” Series

In our Practical Practices section of the newsletter, we highlight practices that you can incorporate in your classrooms, including curated links to outside resources to build your knowledge of that practice.  In this issue we are featuring our “CCTM Board Best Of”.  Each board member reflects on a great book, article, podcast, webinar, or other tidbit that you may also find interesting or inspiring.

Kevin Dykema has been a standout for me this year.  His NCTM President's Messages are timely and relevant and I rarely miss reading one. I’ve started a book he co-authored called Productive Struggle ~ Six Point Action Plan for Fostering Perseverance and plan to finish very soon.  I enjoyed listening to a couple of podcasts featuring Kevin Dykema: 1)  Room to Grow Podcast: Intervention for MIddle and High School and 2) Making Math Moments Matter: Crafting a Productive Struggle in Your Math Classroom.  Both podcasts were well worth my time. You will be able to catch Kevin Dykema at our CCTM summer event so be sure to save the date:  June 13 & 14!  You won’t want to miss him.

Kim Smith, Vice President

Recently, NCTM president Kevin Dykema released his presidential message surrounding homework and its place in the mathematics classroom. While this is a short read, it sums up so much - definitely worth a share with other math teachers you work with! And be sure to check out more by Kevin Dykema including this books and other presidential messages (as well as seeing him at our CCTM Summer Event this June 13th and 14th).  


Joe Bolz, Treasurer

Dr. Rachel Lambert continues to inspire me with her work exploring the intersections between disability studies in education and mathematics education.  Her website, Mathematizing4All contains a wealth of resources, including an article she wrote proposing Universal Design for Learning in Mathematics.  Dr. Lambert recently did a webinar for NCTM titled Unpacking Research Claims About the Teaching and Learning of Mathematics.  This webinar sheds light on why there are seemingly contradictory recommendations from the education field regarding the teaching and learning of mathematics.

Lisa Rogers, Secretary

So often we read work that inspires us, pushes us, fills a gap, soothes an itch, and leaves us clambering for resources. High School Mathematics Lessons to Explore, Understand, and Respond to Social Injustice by Robert Q Berry III, PhD, Basil M Conway IV, Brian R Lawer and John W Staley provides both sides of the desire. In the beginning portion of this resources readers explore how students engage in mathematics in meaningful ways, focusing on culturally appropriate engagement, how to support students connecting with the world around them, and the importance of bringing community members and activities into the classroom. The second portion of the book is a compilation of lesson plans, organized by standard, that brings to life the grounding work of the first part. These lessons are teacher written, reviewed, and practiced and span high school courses. The topics covered span social injustices in a myriad of ways and are easily applied within any school.

Megan Korponic, NCTM Representative

2024 is the year of statistics!  With all of the information we get through the media, I try to help students siphon and question the statistics. One of my go-to resources is Skew the Script.  This site provides relevant, meaningful math lessons which gives students opportunities to critically think about real data.  The topics spark great class discussions.

AnnMarie Cunningham, Membership Chair

Most math educators are familiar with the Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster, but have you seen the AnnotatedPhantom Tollbooth? This book has a brief history of Norton Juster and the publication of the book.  The original text is included, along with annotations in the margins about history, culture, literary comments, artistic context and background.

Chelsea Carstensen, CCTM Region 1 Representative

Understanding and Applying the Science of Learning Math  

The science of learning math, an approach that focuses on how students’ brains learn, is backed by decades of research and evidence. In this panel discussion, leading math researchers and practitioners will define what the science of learning math is, why it is so effective, and what this looks like when applied in the classroom.

Slide Deck; Recorded Webinar 

NCTM Catalyzing Change and Math Teaching Practices [0:00 - 16:45]

Neuroscience of Learning Math [16:55 - 28:00]

What does it look like in practice? [28:00 - 46:00] 

Q&A [46:00-59:34]

Amber Gardner,CCTM Region 3 Representative 

A favorite book of mine I often (listen to) return to is Upstream by Dan Heath.  This helps me to be flexible and creative during stressful times.  “Upstream work is about reducing the probability that problems will happen, and for that reason, the work must culminate in systems change.  Because systems are the source of those probabilities. To change the system is to change the rules that govern us or the culture that influences us.”

Felicia Casto, CCTM Region 6 Representative

One of the best professional development opportunities that I have been part of are the Teacher Math Circles at UNC since 2004. Some of you are familiar with our Northern Colorado Math Circles program: we provide mathematical problem-solving sessions for teachers who would like to work on fun, challenging math problems. We work together on such problems, discuss different problem-solving strategies and learn from each other. These problems are suitable for different levels with multiple entry points. You also earn a certificate of professional development credit.

For information about this amazing opportunity coming up February 21, take a look in the ECHO section of the newsletter.   If interested please fill out the form below by February 19.

Sonya Mendoza-Weiss, CCTM Region 4 Representative.

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