RYSK: Gutiérrez's Political Conocimiento for Teaching Mathematics: Why Teachers Need It and How to Develop It (2018)

Rochelle Gutiérrez keynoting the 2016 CCTM Conference
I haven't used the "RYSK" tag for a blog post in almost four years, but only because I've taken to summarizing research over on the MathEd.net Wiki. That wiki turns five years old this month while this blog turns eight! I think my best strategy is to summarize on the wiki and editorialize here on the blog, and the events of this week demanded that I break my blogging silence and deal with an issue of the moment.

Last Monday I was riding the bus home when Google stuck an article from an anti-liberal education site called Campus Reform into my news feed. It was about a math education professor and white privilege, so I checked it out (in incognito mode — I try not to give Google the wrong ideas about the sites I want more news from). The article was about Rochelle Gutiérrez and honestly, it didn't say all that much except to highlight connections Rochelle was making between math and white privilege. The comments below the article were...what you'd probably expect. I closed the story and didn't think much about it, other than, "I wonder if this story will go anywhere?"

Go somewhere, it did. On Wednesday Google showed me that Fox News had picked up the story. Predictably in this era of internet news, it wasn't original reporting on the content of Rochelle's work. It was just a rehash of the Campus Reform article and it was getting a lot of comments. Judging by what I was seeing, the Fox News patrons didn't seem to have read Rochelle's work either. I searched Twitter for use of Rochelle's handle and saw she was getting a lot of negative comments with some blatant harassment thrown in (I reported one person whose account was subsequently found in violation of Twitter's rules). Those people didn't appear to have read Rochelle's chapter, either. (A notable exception: Jason Miller's post and conversation on Google+, which took the rational approach of asking "Does anyone know more about this?" and got replies like, "Here's more info, but not enough to draw conclusions." Score +1 for Google+.)

If I've learned anything in 2017, it's that I need to be upset/outraged on my own schedule and on my own terms. That usually means doing more listening and learning and not jumping into a soon-forgotten online fray. So I ordered the book Building Support for Scholarly Practices in Mathematics Methods, in which Rochelle's chapter appears, and waited a few days for it to arrive so I could actually read it before commenting.

I've now read and summarized the chapter on the MathEd.net Wiki. Did Rochelle link the privilege of mathematics to the privilege of being White? Did she say we perpetuate that privilege when we focus on Greek mathematical history and not that of other peoples? Did she say we should see mathematical knowledge is relational, and not objective? Yes, she did say all those things, and in that way the original Campus Reform article was mostly accurate. Where it wasn't accurate — and led many other sites and their audiences astray — was representing Rochelle's chapter as mostly about those things. Rochelle made most of those statements in a page or two, then spent the rest of her 27 pages laying out a framework of teacher knowledge meant to help prospective teachers deal with the political realities that affect their work.

What strikes me after reading the chapter is that Rochelle names many political influences on teaching and education that are also common targets of the right: Common Core, Pearson, big philanthropic foundations, bureaucratic inefficiency and misdirection, and control of schools that doesn't reflect local needs. There is plenty of common ground to be explored in the chapter if people choose to look for it and discuss it. The news sites could have done that, but they didn't. It wouldn't be sensational enough to generate traffic and ad revenue, and their typical narrative doesn't leave room for discussing the development of political knowledge meant to benefit traditionally underserved students.

Now that things have (probably) quieted down, we can look at Rochelle's chapter for the reasons she wrote it: to inform math teacher educators who want to help prospective teachers deal with the political pressures and distractions that can interfere with giving students the help they need. If you are a math teacher educator, this looks like a book you should have. I've put the table of contents on the wiki along with the summary of Rochelle's chapter.

This Week in Math Ed: April 21, 2017

Math Ed Said

April 14: If you missed the Ignite talks at this year's NCSM conference, The Math Forum has recordings of them for you here.

Shared by: Farshid Safi, Math Coach Rivera, F. Skip Fennell, Jill Gough, The Math Forum, Christine Newell, Jocelyn Dagenais, Christine Newell, Annie Fetter, Brian Shay, Shauna Hedgepeth, Brian Bushart, Suzanne Alejandre

April 15: What were your favorite parts of the NCSM and NCTM conferences? Tracy Johnston Zager reflects on her conference experiences with "NCSM/NCTM My Favorite." Stick around for the comments.

Shared by: Zack Miller, Robert Kaplinsky, Genni Steele, Matt Larson, Jen McAleer, Lane Walker, Mike Flynn, Carl Oliver, Bryan Anderson, Jill Gough, Andrew Gael, Christine Newell, Tracy Johnston Zager

April 16: Following the NCTM Annual Meeting, Andrew Gael said "We Need YOU!" and asked for feedback to help the future of NCTM's publishing committee.

Shared by: Nate Goza, Megan Hayes-Golding, Megan Schmidt, Elham Kazemi, Michael Fenton, Allison Hintz, Anna Blinstein, Tina Cardone, Tracy Johnston Zager, Christine Newell, Bridget Dunbar, Brian Bushart, Heather Johnson, Graham Fletcher, Kate Nowak, Shelley Carranza, Tim Hudson, Jennifer Bell, Robert Kaplinsky, Carl Oliver, Andrew Gael

April 17: More people were sharing Andrew Gael's request for input about the future of NCTM's publishing committee.

Shared by: NCTM, Jose Vilson, Andrew Gael, Sadie Estrella, Jennifer Wilson, Suzanne Alejandre, Zak Champagne, Annie Fetter, Matt Vaudrey, Amy Lucenta, Max Ray-Riek, Mike Flynn

Kristin Umland presenting at the 2017 NCTM Annual Meeting
April 18: Congratulations to Kristin Umland for receiving the AMS Impact Award for her contributions and efforts to improve math education.

Shared by: Barbara Beske, Jennifer Wilson, Heather Johnson, Andrew Gael, Jody Guarino, Ashli Black, Kristin Gray, Vanessa Cerrahoglu, Bridget Dunbar, Nik Doran, Jen Silverman, David Petersen, Kate Nowak, Bowen Kerins, Illustrative Maths

April 19: The Saskatchewan Mathematics Teachers' Society shined their Spotlight on the Profession on Christopher Danielson.

Shared by: Jonathan Edmonds, Bryan Anderson, Nat Banting, Jill Rubinstein, Earl Samuelson, Jill Gough, Simon Gregg, Ilona Vashchyshyn

April 20: Dan Meyer wrote "How I Present" where he describes his process for assembling a conference presentation.

Shared by: Theresa Walker, Kaitie O'Bryan, Kate Owens, Patrick Honner, Emily Campbell, Jill Gough, Andrew Gael, Robert Kaplinsky, Dan Meyer, Ed Campos Jr, John Golden, Laura Wheeler, Matthew Oldridge

This Week in Math Ed: April 14, 2017

Math Ed Said

April 7: Desmos has a beta Geometry site, which looks to have features similar to Geogebra and Sketchpad.

Shared by: Cathy Yenca, George Carganilla, Steven Francis, Allison Krasnow, Bridget Dunbar, Jedidiah Butler, Heather Kohn, Andy Zsiga, Steve Phelps, David Sabol, Jen McAleer, Sara VanDerWerf, Steve Phelps, Jonathan Osters, Bob Lochel, Ilona Vashchyshyn, Kevin Lawrence, Carl Oliver, Steve Fuguet, Anna Blinstein, Mike Larson, Anna Vance, Audrey McLaren, Jack Brown, Bryn Humberstone, Zack Miller, Eddi Vulić, Andrew Shauver, Jo Morgan, Andrew Busch, Robin Mathews, John Gibson, Jon Orr, Karen McPherson, Kathy Henderson, Rebecca Afghani, Ed Campos Jr

April 8: More people were sharing Desmos's Geometry site.

Shared by: Martin Joyce, Gregory Taylor, Carol Keating, Ethan Weker, Joanne Crooks, Rene Grimes, Bryan Anderson, Pam J. Wilson, Keith Jones, Kirsten Silverman, Matt Leiss, Morgan Fierst, Annie Perkins, Shauna Hedgepeth, John Golden, Ryan Smith, Julia Finneyfrock, Jennifer Blinzler, Heather Sugrue, Simon Gregg, Mary Bourassa

April 9: More people found reasons to share "The Desmos Geometry Tool," this time with a Desmos blog post.

Shared by: Ryan R Ruff, Geoff Wake, Matt Vaudrey, Steve Fuguet, Edmund Harriss, Peg Cagle, Dylan Kane, PhET Sims, Keith Jones, Amanda Haskell, Matt Owen, Jason Merrill, Cathy Yenca, Nerissa Gerodias, Julia Finneyfrock, Mattie B, John O'Malley IV, Kimberly Wassmuth, Daniel Luevanos, Craig Klement, Rusty Anderson, Jon Orr, Zach Cresswell, Jeremiah Ruesch, George Carganilla, Laura Wheeler, Annie Perkins, Brian Bushart, Norma Gordon, Mary Bourassa, Stephanie Ling, Farshid Safi, Anna Blinstein, Martin Joyce, Julie Reulbach, Ethan Weker, Nanette Johnson, Andrew Busch, Eddi Vulić, Jennifer Blinzler, Audrey McLaren, Kevin Lawrence, Karl Fisch, Megan Heine, Janice Novakowski, Christine Newell, Jocelyn Dagenais, Kathy Henderson, Patty Stephens, Desmos.com

April 10: If you're looking for NCSM and NCTM presentations that had connections to Illustrative Mathematics, look no further than right here.

Shared by: Vanessa Cerrahoglu, Karen McPherson, Richard V DeMerchant, Barbara Beske, Bowen Kerins, Theodore Chao, Kate Nowak, Lindel, Jill Gough, Christina Sherman, Kaneka Turner, Nanette Johnson, Shauna Hedgepeth, David Petersen, Kristin Gray, J Clarke, Illustrative Maths

April 11: If you've ever wondered what you needed to know about applying to speak at NCTM, Robert Kaplinsky has some answers. The post includes links to the video of him presenting with Dan Meyer on this topic, as well as details about how speaker proposals are scored.

Shared by: Bryan Anderson, CMC - CA MathCouncil, Jill Rubinstein, OCTM, Heather Johnson, Patrick Honner, Ethan Weker, Sarah Bush, Farshid Safi, Dan Meyer, Bridget Dunbar, Kate Nowak, Ed Campos Jr, Jocelyn Dagenais, Christine Newell, Robert Kaplinsky

April 12: With a not-so-surprising result, a "Study finds female professors outperform men in service -- to their possible professional detriment."

Shared by: Life LeGeros, Heather Johnson, Jennifer Wilson, TJ Hitchman, David Coffey, Ilana Horn

Fawn Nguyen at Innov8 2016
April 13: Fawn Nguyen shared "Lillian," a post about a former student who passionately describes in a video why she's tired of trying to live up to others' expectations. Definitely worth watching.

Shared by: Genni Steele, Federico Chialvo, Andrew Gael, Matt Vaudrey, John Golden, Gene Jordan, Karl Fisch, Nerissa Gerodias, Anna Blinstein, Bryan Anderson, Sharon Vestal, Lisa Bejarano, Robert Kaplinsky, Fawn Nguyen

This Week in Math Ed: April 7, 2017

John Urschel, the breakout star of NCTM17
Perhaps my favorite part of working for the Colorado Department of Education is that I get to engage with the mathematics education community, curate what I find, and share it with others. It's part of my job. Unfortunately, I've had very little time for this lately, so instead of falling a few weeks behind, I suddenly find myself a few months behind! Can I catch up? The only way to find out is to go back to March 31st. I was away at the ASSM, NCSM, and NCTM conferences, which was great for my personal learning but tough on my blogging schedule!

Math Ed Said

March 31: Jamie Duncan pushes for number talks and other forms of promoting student arithmetic reasoning in "The Mother of Fluency." One takeaway from this post should be a need for patience and a strategy for playing the long game, instead of knee-jerk reactions to moments when students appear to lack fluency.

Shared by: Rusty Anderson, Ann Gaffney, Lindel, Annie Forest, Jamie Duncan, Rosa Serratore, Tracy Johnston Zager, Margie Pearse, Math Coach Rivera

April 1: Desmos.com announced a plaid Spring Makeover for the Desmos Graphing Calculator. For April 1, anyway.

Shared by: Shelley Carranza, Sherri Burroughs, Cathy Yenca, Jocelyn Dagenais, Mary Williams, Desmos.com, Ben Morris, Allison Krasnow, Dewey Gottlieb, Audrey McLaren, David Petersen, Bridget Dunbar, Mary Gambrel

April 2: Math ed reporter extraordinaire Katrina Schwartz shares some Teaching Channel videos in a KQED post called, "How Kids Benefit From Learning To Explain Their Math Thinking."

Shared by: Christina Tondevold, Pat Power, Nicholas Smith, Kendra Lomax, Ed Campos Jr., Keith Devlin, David Coffey, Alex Overwijk

April 3: Jo Boaler writes in The Hechinger Report, "It's time to stop the clock on math anxiety; here's the latest research on how."

Shared by: Math Coach Rivera, John Berray, Kathy Henderson, Dewey Gottlieb, Nita Cochran, Lisa Melton Pizzuto, Rosa Serratore, Jamie Garner, Nicole Enzinger, Darren Burris, Robbyn Glinsmann, Laura Wagenman, Jennifer Lawler, Norma Gordon, Janine Franklin, Nikki Fife, Paul Gray, George Woodbury, Alison Hansel, John Rowe, Siri Anderson, Chris Kalmbach, Jo Boaler

April 4: Robert Kaplinsky makes an important point about the need for context when asking students about area and perimeter.

Shared by: Laura Wagenman, Josh Fisher, OCTM, Jen McAleer, Siri Anderson, WMC - WI MathCouncil, Alison Hansel, Robert Kaplinsky

April 5: Jo Boaler was surveying people to see which grade levels they wanted to see YouCubed make books for first.

Shared by: Kathy Henderson, Jen McAleer, Tyrone Martinez Black, Alison Hansel, Ben Woodford, Jo Boaler

April 6: If you've ever looked for tutorials on how to create things in Desmos, here they are.
Shared by: Mike Larson, Bryn Humberstone, Jon Orr, Michael Fenton, Kimberly Wassmuth, Jen Silverman, Danielle Reycer, Jocelyn Dagenais, Jocelyn Dagenais, Brian Bushart, Cathy Yenca

This Week in Math Ed: March 31, 2017

The Alamo!
(Weird fact: Turn 180 degrees and you'd be taking a picture of the Ripley's Believe it or Not across the street.)

Hello from San Antonio! I'm here for the ASSM Annual Meeting and am preparing for a great week of learning from NCSM and NCTM. It's the busiest week of my math ed year, and I was determined to get caught up with TWiME so my slate will be clean and I can move on to sharing great stuff from here in San Antonio. Oh, and I spent last weekend at the University of Michigan talking math with Deborah Ball. I should write about that, too, but that deserves its own post. If you missed them, here are my abbreviated TWiME posts for the rest of March:
  • Week ending March 3: PD from Peter Liljedhal, PCMI outreach, Youcubed archives, and more.
  • Week ending March 10: Mystery Grid, Marilyn Burns, the difference between modeling math and mathematical modeling, and more.
  • Week ending March 17: Teaching ability and content knowledge, Peter Liljedhal at GMD, Pi Day, and more.
  • Week ending March 24: An ode to blank paper, getting real about growth mindset, improving student participation in number talks, and more.

Math Ed Said

March 24: The NCTM Annual Meeting is around the corner and people are gearing up for all the Ignite talks.

Shared by: Sarah Bush, Jose Vilson, Megan Schmidt, Jonathan Osters, NCTM, Bridget Dunbar, Suzanne Alejandre

March 25: Here are Desmos's Friday Faves for March 24.

Shared by: Martin Joyce, John Golden, April Pforts, Adrianne Burns, Leigh Ann Mitchell, Desmos.com

March 26: Graham Fletcher is back with another installment in his Making Sense Series, this time with "The Progression of Early Number and Counting."

Shared by: Martin Joyce, Jennifer Lawler, Rosa Serratore, Kyle Pearce, Jamie Duncan, Daniel Luevanos, Kim Webb, April Pforts, Devin Anderson, Molly Daley, Christina Sherman, Andrew Gael, Matthew Oldridge, Shelley Carlisle, Margie Pearse, Ann Elise Record, Rusty Anderson, Simon Gregg, Ashley Bingenheimer, Joe Schwartz, Laura Wagenman, Grace Kelemanik, Math Coach Rivera, Graham Fletcher

March 27: I'm sure I'm not the only one who keeps thinking, "Wow, it's pretty cool that Marilyn Burns is blogging." Here she is again, this time with "Preparing and Planning: How I Get Ready for Teaching a Math Lesson." Here Marilyn got into the nitty-gritty details of her planning process, a topic which I think it very important as we think about ways to share lessons that are made for teachers to learn from, not just teach with.

Shared by: John Golden, Mark Chubb, Janice Novakowski, Cathy Campbell, Michael Pershan, Annie Perkins, Andrew Gael, Amanda Jansen, Tracy Johnston Zager, Kat Hendry, Emily Campbell, Jill Gough, Marilyn Burns

March 28: You all think Marilyn Burns is great, too, so you shared this post for a second day: "Preparing and Planning: How I Get Ready for Teaching a Math Lesson."

Shared by: Chris Hunter, Andrew Gael, Marilyn Burns, Ashley Bingenheimer, Marilyn Burns, Katherine Bryant, Rosa Serratore, Christine Newell, Mike Rashid, Bridget Dunbar, Christina Sherman, Genni Steele, David Coffey, Ashley Walther, Matthew Oldridge

March 29: Jo Boaler argues that "The Way We Teach Math Is Holding Women Back." Women are still underrepresented in STEM disciplines, something that I hope changes soon. In math education, women are often in the majority (in a meeting of 18 math PAEMST coordinators yesterday, I was the only male), and through better representation, leadership, and a concerted effort to teach math better, we can keep more doors open for all those who wish to pass through them.

Shared by: Francis Su, Christine K DiPaulo, Alex Freuman, Crystal Morey, Christopher Rohde, Kat Hendry, Kris Karbon, Sarah Reynolds, Christie Madancy, Christina Sherman, Amy Spies, Nita Cochran, Alison Hansel, Kimberly Wassmuth, Jim Pardun, Christine Newell, Ben Woodford, David Coffey, Laura Wagenman, Mr. Keller, Mathematics cian, Jo Boaler

March 30: People continued to buzz about Jo Boaler's latest article, "The Way We Teach Math Is Holding Women Back."

Shared by: Michelle Dupree, Vanessa Cerrahoglu, Kelly Boles, Jen Overley, Christina Barry, Kelly & Megan, Ryan R. Ruff, Egan J. Chernoff, Rebecca Gasper, Ellen Byron, Nick Gerhard, Keith Devlin, Steven Strogatz, Brian R. Lawler, Jennifer Wilson, Kate Owens

Math Ed in Colorado

Quick Updates

You've heard the details about these things before so I won't repeat all of them now. Here are a few things you should know and remember:
  • Work on the review and revision of the Colorado Academic Standards is taking shape. Soon we'll announce who the committee members are. You can submit your feedback on every statement in the standards on CDE's online feedback system through April 30. Our next standards update webinar is April 20th at 3:30. If you missed the previous two webinars, recordings are available on the CDE website.
  • Our work towards new math certifications continues. What started as a request for CDE to create an endorsement for elementary math specialists has shifted and grown. The details are still being worked out, but our goals have stayed the same: We want to help districts hire well-trained math teachers and specialists, and we want to provide career ladders that incentivize and recognize educators who go above and beyond to become better math educators.

Commissioner Anthes to form Teacher Cabinet

Colorado Education Commissioner Katy Anthes recently announced the creation of a "Teacher Cabinet" to consult with about issues of state education policy. It will be made up of 15 teachers from around the state. For more information and to apply, visit the Commissioner's page on the CDE website. The deadline is Friday, May 5!

CML Elections

As part of their becoming an affiliate of NCSM, the Colorado Math Leaders approved a constitution and bylaws at their last meeting and will be holding elections in the coming weeks. The candidates will be announced in the next few days and registered voters can help select our inaugural set of officers. If you're a math leader — anything from a curriculum specialist or a coach or even just a teacher who wants to step up and lead in their building — CML is where you need to be for policy updates, professional learning, and colleagues who share in your efforts to make math teaching better. Email me to request a ballot and to join the CML mailing list.

MAA-Rocky Mountain Section Meeting

If you missed the earlier message, the Rocky Mountain Section of the Mathematical Association of America is having a meeting at CSU-Pueblo on April 21-22. For information about schedules, speakers, and registration, see the conference website.

CSPdWeek and BJC

I know the focus here is math, but I know many of you are pulling double-duty in computer science as well. If you're looking for an opportunity to learn more, CSPdWeek will be held again this summer at the Colorado School of Mines from July 17-21. CSPdWeek offers a professional development experience for those who plan to teach AP CS Principles, AP CS A (Java), Exploring Computer Science, or Bootstrap. Counselors are invited to attend half the week for their PD, too. Go to www.cspdweek.org for more information.

Also, if you're interested in summer PD for the Beauty & Joy of Computing (BJC) course, email Tracy Camp at the School of Mines for more information. She has a strategy that combines funding from Donors Choose with a stipend to cover the expenses, but to get all the details it's best to contact her.


Thanks to all of you who nominated a teacher for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST). Now for the toughest part: Finishing the application! If you've been nominated, I have resources to help you finish your application. If you nominated someone, keep up the encouragement — a lot of great teachers miss out because their application is incomplete!

Job Openings

Here are some positions open across the state of Colorado. If you're interested in posting a job opening to the COmath mailing list, you're welcome to do so. I can also post them in my updates. Of course, don't just post them here — there are far better places to make these announcements. With this list, I just hope to up the odds a bit that the right candidate finds the right job.
  • Lake County High School in Leadville, Colorado, is adding a middle school position. If you are interested in living in the mountains, working at a school that combines the work of Jo Boaler with Expeditionary Learning, and being a part of a community that was recently awarded $3 million in funds to get kids outside, this might be the right job for you. Visit their website for more information and a link to an application.
  • STRIVE Prep is looking for talented educators to transform Denver. This includes four positions: Middle School Math Teacher (Multiple Campuses), Middle School Math Teacher Leader, High School Math Teacher (Algebra 1), and Assistant Principal of STEM Instruction.
  • Sterling High School is hiring two high school math teachers starting next fall. Classes include Algebra I, Algebra II, and Geometry. Interested applicants can contact Mr. Wally Beardsley, school principal.
  • Denver Public School is seeking a K-12 Director of Mathematics. More information can be found at DPS's job site if you search for DIRECTOR, MATHEMATICS (JOB ID: 19217). The essential functions and objectives include:
    • Develop, support, supervise, coordinate and evaluate District functions in the specific areas of K-12 mathematics. Champions the District’s effort to continuously refine and implement comprehensive instruction programs that are researched-based and aligned with district and state content standards
    • Serve on the department's Leadership Team to monitor and guide the focus and actions of the department in mathematics
    • Facilitate central office curriculum specialists as they focus on the curriculum development needed to improve student assessment measures which are linked to district initiative
    • Observe and offer formal and informal feedback to curriculum specialists and partners concerning planning and instructional delivery
    • Design professional learning in collaboration with curriculum specialists and partners.

This Week in Math Ed: March 24, 2017

Math Ed Said

March 17: Tracy Johnston Zager writes "A Brief Ode to Blank Paper," in which worksheets try to be helpful but turn out not to be.

Shared by: Andrew Gael, Bowen Kerins, Tracy Johnston Zager, Geoff Krall, Joe Schwartz

March 18: Mark Chubb asks, "So you want your students to have a Growth Mindset?" Answer: Yes. I also want teachers to have more than a superficial knowledge of growth mindset. Making a poster with the words "growth mindset" on it might not be helpful, and neither is telling kids that there's something wrong with them if they don't have it. Mark works through some of the misguided ideas we have about mindset and makes suggestions for how to do it better.

Shared by: Deborah Rykken, Tom Snarsky, Laura Wagenman, Alison Hansel, Jo Boaler, Mark Chubb

March 19: Here's a post from last year rising again to the surface, which is a pretty good sign of quality: "#MTBoS Connected: Fraction Talks and WODB." It's good to see these kinds of cross-project connections.

Shared by: Matthew Oldridge, Simon Gregg, Tyler Anderson, Fraction Talks

March 20: Want more Mark Chubb? Lucky for you, he's on a roll this week, this time with "Estimating - Making sense of things."

Shared by: Judy Keeney, Jennifer Lawler, Mark Chubb, Laura Wheeler, Regina Barrett

March 21: Lisa Bejarano gave us all a little number talk advice: "It's the little things: How I improved student participation in number talks." Hint: It includes dropping something to signify you've made your point.

Shared by: Sarah Carter, Sarah Reynolds, Kate Nowak, Regan Galvan, Lisa Bejarano

March 22: I feel like we went a few months without Ben Orlin's bad drawings, but now he's on a hot streak. This week, it's "If Math Wrote Letters." Technically, this week only has hand-drawn text, not drawings, but I think it still counts.

Shared by: Spencer Bagley, DeAnn Huinker, Anna Blinstein, Joshua Bowman, John Golden, Simon Gregg, Ethan Weker, Dave Richeson, Ilona Vashchyshyn, Sharon Vestal, Ben Orlin, David Butler, Kathy Henderson, Jen Silverman, geonz, Michael P Goldenberg, Earl Samuelson

March 23: Brian Bushart hits kinda close to home with "Mathematically Correct," a blog post about his struggles in the state of Texas to acknowledge and hopefully fix an issue with a math question on their state exams. You see, I help with the PARCC exams and that makes me one of those people who, potentially, could catch problems like this before they go live on a test. However, I'm just one person, I usually just focus on a single grade, and the windows of opportunity to catch a problem like this are limited. It's frustrating to see an item that could be made better when it's not the right time to be improving items.

Shared by: Judy Keeney, Andrew Gael, Cathy Yenca, Pam Harris, Lindel, TCM - NCTM, Zach Cresswell, Ethan Weker, Shauna Hedgepeth, Tracy Johnston Zager

This Week in Math Ed: March 17, 2017

Math Ed Said

March 10: Michael Fenton asks how we'd ideally split "Teaching Ability and Content Knowledge." His blog post doesn't touch on it, but it reminded me of some research I saw cited long ago in Joan Ferrini-Mundy's chapter in the research handbook. The research found that more teacher content knowledge was linked to increased student achievement, but only to a point. When measured by college math coursework, the effect wasn't distinguishable beyond about five math courses taken. (If I wasn't in catch-up mode, I'd track that study down. If you find it, remind me what it is in the comments, will ya?)

Shared by: Martin Joyce, Tyler Anderson, Christina Sherman, Michael Fenton, Darren Burris, Gregory Taylor, Bridget Dunbar, Michael Fenton

March 11: Here's some art and math for you: "Artistic Expressions of Math Over Seven Centuries."

Shared by: Theresa Walker, Carrie Muir, John Golden, Egan J Chernoff, Paula Beardell Krieg, Jesse McNulty, Chi Klein, Edmund Harriss, Mike Lawler

March 12: If you want more links of the week, you can always check with our math ed friends in Ontario: Math Links for Week Ending Mar. 10th, 2017.

Shared by: Kyle Pearce, Matthew Oldridge, Mary Bourassa, Sunil Singh, Jon Orr, David Petro

March 13: I should really go back and watch this one: Peter Liljedahl presented "Building Thinking Classrooms" at the Global Math Department.

Shared by: Shelley Carranza, Jedidiah Butler, Christopher Parrish, Matthew Oldridge, Laura Wheeler, Annette Rouleau, Chris Hunter, Bridget Dunbar, Marissa W, Norma Gordon, Graham Fletcher, John Golden, Cal Armstrong, Global Math, Peter Liljedahl

March 14: The headline is "Rockies have perfect way to mark Pi Day," but those seeking the truth should know that yes, the uniform numbers were cleverly arranged with Photoshop.

Shared by: Brian Brennan, Eddi Vulić, Martin Joyce, Zack Patterson, Kristen Fouss, Sharon Vestal, Mike Thayer, Steve Phelps

March 15: Ben Orlin is back with some poetic math fun: "Limericks for Mathematicians."

Shared by: Carrie Muir, Ilona Vashchyshyn, John Golden, Nat Banting, Ben Orlin, Michael P Goldenberg, Evelyn Lamb

March 16: First Peter Liljedahl, and now Nathalie Sinclair. It was a big week for Simon Frasier University. "SFU education professor Nathalie Sinclair named Research Mathematics Ambassador Award winner."

Shared by: Nat Banting, Richelle Marynowski, Lovisa Sumpter, Peter Liljedahl, Annette Rouleau, Egan J Chernoff

This Week in Math Ed: March 10, 2017

Math Ed Said

March 3: What's MysteryGrid? If I told you, it wouldn't be much of a mystery, would it?

Shared by: Mary Bourassa, Scott Leverentz, Lisa Henry, Fred G. Harwood, Bowen Kerins, Kate Nowak, Shauna Hedgepeth

March 4: People were buzzing about the "Beyond Answers Webinar," which has since passed. An archive is accessible for a fee.

Shared by: Christina Tondevald, Shauna Hedgepeth, Ann Elise Record, Jill Gough, Ann Walters, Mike Flynn

March 5: Here's Marilyn Burns with a blog post about playing a math game with second graders called, "Oh No! 99!"

Shared by: Mike Anderson, Jennifer Lawler, Andy Martinson, Bridget Dunbar, OCTM, Matthew Oldridge, Christina Sherman, Jill Gough, Michael Welch, Marilyn Burns

March 6: "Solving the Math Problem" is a video clip about some kids who attended a Youcubed summer camp.

Shared by: Beth Kobett, Denise Green, Jenni Clausen, Kat Hendry, Larry Sizemore, Patty Stephens, Keith Devlin, Rusty Anderson, Kimberly Wassmuth, Math Coach Rivera, Susan Davidson, Shauhna Feitlin, Ben Woodford, Jo Boaler

March 7: If you missed it on the 6th, it was back on the 7th by popular demand: "Solving the Math Problem."

Shared by: Martin Joyce, Justin Bock, Andrea Ogden, Jen Overley, Carol Keating, Nic Petty, Regina Barrett, Richelle Marynowski, OCTM, Michelle Dupree

March 8: Ben Orlin asks, "How much of high school math would be easier if students understood that graphs express relationships between variables?" in his post, "Lines Beyond y = mx + b." I think of this as another example described by Sfard (1991), where learners need to make the leap from understanding something as a process to understanding it as an object.

Shared by: Martin Joyce, Kathy Henderson, Amanda Jansen, Brett Parker, Ilona Vashchyshyn, Matthew Oldridge, Bowen Kerins, David Butler, John Golden, Ben Orlin, Judy Larsen, Eric Milou, Christina Sherman

March 9: Warning: This will take more than five seconds. But maybe not much more. Dan Meyer writes, "The Difference Between Math and Modeling with Math in Five Seconds."

Shared by: Rebecca Gasper, Farshid Safi, Rene Grimes, Tyler Anderson, Jen McAleer, Alex Jaffurs, Dan Meyer

This Week in Math Ed: March 3, 2017

Math Ed Said

February 24: Desmos announced that information about the Desmos Fellowship Cohort 2 would be coming soon.

Shared by: Ellen Byron, Cathy Yenca, Stephanie Blair, Lisa Bejarano, Kat Hendry, Susan Wilson, Julia Finneyfrock, Shelley Carranza, Patty Stephens, Nerissa Gerodias, Meg Craig, Laura Wheeler, Andrew Shauver, Julie Reulbach, Andrew Shauver, Dan Meyer

February 25: Gregory Taylor gives us a long and lively recap of a PD day keynoted by Peter Liljedahl.

Shared by: Laura Wheeler, Matthew Oldridge, Cathy Campbell, Alex Overwijk, Martin Joyce, Gregory Taylor, Dan Anderson, Judy Keeney, Earl Samuelson, John Golden, Imtiaz Damji

February 26: If you've ever wanted some of the PCMI experience but can't make it to Park City, the program does have a number of outreach programs that bring PCMI to the web and maybe even a city near you.

Shared by: Kim, Carl Oliver, Cathy Carroll, Javier Garcia,Tina Cardone, Denise Green,Shauna Hedgepeth,Cal Armstrong, Suzanne Alejandre

February 27: The NCTM Annual Meeting program is here and the conference is right around the corner.

Shared by: Rosa Serratore, Janice Novakowski, NCTM, David Coffey, Suzanne Alejandre, Christina Tondevold, Carl Oliver, Sarah Bush

February 28: I'd never heard of this mathy day, but this Scientific American article by Evelyn Lamb told me "How to Celebrate Fatou's Day."

Shared by: Rebecca Gasper, Brian Bushart, Justin Lanier, Evelyn Lamb, MAA, Carrie Muir, Museum of Math

March 1: Self explanatory: Applications Are Open for Cohort 2 of the Desmos Teaching Fellowship!

Shared by: Marissa Walczak, Michelle Russell, Patty Stephens, Heather Sugrue, Bob Lochel, Julie Reulbach, Sara VanDerWerf, Julia Finneyfrock, Shelley Carranza, Zach Cresswell, David Sabol, Ben Rouse, Nerissa Gerodias, Ed Campos Jr, Katherine Martin, Kristen Fouss, Eli Luberoff, Karl Fisch, Dan Anderson, Desmos.com

March 2: If you're looking for resources related to growth mindset, check out this Youcubed archive of papers, videos, handouts, and other materials.

Shared by: Lora Kermode, Janine Franklin, Helen J Williams, Christina Hamman, Jesse McNulty

This Week in Math Ed: February 24, 2017

Math Ed Said

February 17: Amy Harmon wrote in the New York Times, "Equations and Inequalities: Math, Race and Fellowship," which later had the title, "Beyond 'Hidden Figures': Nurturing New Black and Latino Math Whizzes." Regardless of the title, the story is a great look at kids participating in a summer math camp in New York City, and the issues surrounding the underrepresentation of Black and Latino students in gifted and math programs.

Shared by: Dan Anderson, Theresa Walker, Elizabeth Statmore, Edmund Harriss, Kate Nowak, John Golden, Egan J Chernoff, Francis Su, Michael Pershan, Sue Jones, Christopher Danielson, Tyrone Martinez Black, Rosa Serratore, Tracy Johnston Zager, Jennifer Lawler, Malke Rosenfeld, Robert Berry, Justin Lanier, Geoff Krall, Gary Davis, Steven Strogatz

February 18: Didn't read it yesterday? Here's a second chance: "Equations and Inequalities: Math, Race and Fellowship."

Shared by: Brian R. Lawler, Amanda Jansen, Andrew Gael, Bridget Dunbar, TODOS, CMC - CA Math Council, Erika Bullock, Sheri Eastman, US World Class Math, Bridget Dunbar, Jen Silverman, Steven Strogatz, Alex Jaffurs

February 19: The big story today wasn't math, and wasn't politics, but instead was Susan Fowler's blog post, "Reflecting on one very, very strange year at Uber."

Shared by: CMC - CA MathCouncil, Spencer Bagley, Jacqueline, Anna Blinstein, Karen King, Gregory Taylor, Keith Devlin

February 20: The latest blog post from NCTM President Matt Larson is about "The Elusive Search for Balance. For more than 200 years in the U.S., the math ed pendulum has swung back and forth between procedures and understanding. The necessary difficulty, says Larson, is letting the pendulum come to rest somewhere in between.

Shared by: NCTM, Fawn Nguyen, Robert Berry, stefanie buckner, Ilona Vashchyshyn, Beth Brandenburg, Henri Picciotto

February 21: Dan Meyer explained "Why We're Suspicious of Immediate Feedback." It's a design principle at Desmos, where the key isn't immediate feedback, but feedback after a delay that provides for some productive contemplation.

Shared by: Jason Merrill, Ryan R. Ruff, Levi Patrick, Kris Karbon, Ed Campos Jr., Kevin Lawrence, Dan Meyer

February 22: Shannon Najmabadi writes at the The Chronicle of Higher Education, "Meet the Math Professor Who's Fighting Gerrymandering With Geometry." This is about the person behind the Geometry of Redistricing program at Tufts mentioned a few weeks back.

Shared by: Federico Chialvo, Carrie Muir, Theresa Walker, Glenn Waddell, Jr., Eric Milou, Evelyn Lamb, Vanessa Cerrahoglu, Steven Strogatz, Joshua Bowman, Ralph Pantozzi, Samuel Otten, Heather Johnson, Karen King

February 23: Jennifer Vadnais took the Marbleslides activity in Desmos and turned it into Mini Golf Marbleslides. Holes-in-one, only, please!

Shared by: Sara VanDerWerf, Brian Errey, George Carganilla, Ed Campos Jr., Norma Gordon, Audrey McLaren, Stephanie Ling, Ms. J. Brown, Jennifer Dao, Nerissa Gerodias, Desmos.com

Math Ed in Colorado

It's a huge list of updates!

CCTM Deadlines

Nominations for CCTM's 2017 Mathematics Teaching and Leadership Awards must be submitted by Sunday, March 5. Before teachers and leaders can be eligible to win these awards, they must be nominated. Once nominated, teachers and leaders will need to submit additional information to help the CCTM awards committee choose the winners to be recognized at next fall's CCTM conference. See the CCTM website for more information about the teacher award and the leadership award and to access the nomination forms.

PAEMST Nominations

Now that I have you in the nominating mood, why not nominate the very best math, science, or computer science you know for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching? Nominations are open until April 1 and applications must be completed by May 1. I strongly suggest getting a head start on the nominations and applications, as we have webinars and mentoring to help nominees through the application process. (I literally got notified of a new nominee as I wrote this -- let your nomination be the next one!)

CML Meeting

The next meeting of the Colorado Math Leaders will be the afternoon of Friday, March 10. This will be an important meeting because we will be voting to accept our new constitution and bylaws, which are necessary to become an affiliate of NCSM. We'll also be talking about officer elections for CML in addition to the usual professional learning and CDE updates. Watch the CML mailing list for more details.

Math Teachers' Circle Summer Workshop

The March 1 early application deadline has passed, but you can still apply for the 2017 Summer Math Teachers' Circle Workshop in Durango, to be held June 12-16 until May 15, 2017.

SLD Webinars

CDE's Exceptional Student Services Unit is offering a series of five one-hour webinars addressing the needs of struggling learners with specific learning disabilities. The webinars will be on the first Monday of each month:
  • February 6: Focusing on the Nonstrategic Math Learner
  • March 6: Learning Whole Number Operations
  • April 3: Let's Be Rational: Learning Integers, Fractions, Decimals
  • May 1: Mathese: The Language of Mathematics
  • June 5: Bridging the Arithmetic to Algebra Gap
Register for any or all of the webinars in this series at http://www.cde.state.co.us/cdesped/sd-sld.

Teaching Math to English Learners

CDE's Office of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education is offering Teaching Math to English Learners workshops later the spring. Two workshops have been announced so far in Lamar and Limon:
More information about these and other professional learning opportunities from the CLDE office can be found on the CLDE website.

Mathematical Mindsets Book Study

Cassie Harrelson of Aurora Public Schools is facilitating an online book study of Jo Boaler's Mathematical Mindsets beginning on March 27 and lasting through May 7. The book study comes with credit and you can register for it on the COpilot website.

Felicia Casto Wins the Milken Award

Math teacher, interventionist, and coach Felicia Casto of Mesa County Valley School District 51 won the prestigious Milken Educator Award. You can watch a news feature about Felicia at http://www.nbc11news.com/video?vid=414708583 and more about her excellent work on her Milken Educator Award biography. Congrats, Felicia!

Math on the "Planes"

Karen Karp at Math on the "Planes"
I was happy last week to join in on the fun at Math on the "Planes", the annual math conference hosted by the Colorado Council for Learning Disabilities. This year the workshops were led by Dr. Karen Karp of Johns Hopkins University. Friday's portion of the conference focused on tiers of instruction and intervention for K-2 students, while on Saturday the focus was on students in grades 3-5. This really is a great conference I hope everyone keeps their eyes open for Math on the "Planes" 2018.

Apply to Serve on a Standards Review Committee

The application process for the standards review and revision committees is underway!

CDE is committed to conducting an open and transparent review and revision of the Colorado Academic Standards by engaging diverse stakeholders to serve as committee members in each standard area. CDE is seeking committee members for each of the 10 content areas, English language proficiency, personal financial literacy, and computer science to provide revision recommendations to the State Board of Education.

According to Colorado state law, the Colorado Academic Standards must be reviewed and revised on or before July 1, 2018 and every six years thereafter.

More information about the standards review and revision process and the committee application process can be found at http://www.cde.state.co.us/standardsandinstruction/casreview.

Go directly to the committee application at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/casapplication.

CAS Online Feedback

CDE has developed an online standards review system to enable all Coloradoans to provide specific feedback on each and every expectation within all 10 content areas of the Colorado Academic Standards. This is your chance to provide feedback directly to the committees that will be making recommendations for revisions to the standards. This is a first-of-its-kind opportunity that will only be available until April 30, 2017.

Have your voice heard!

The review and revision process is required by Senate Bill 08-212, known as Colorado’s Achievement Plan for Kids (CAP4K). The law requires a review and revision of the Colorado Academic Standards on or before July 1, 2018 and every six years thereafter.

More information about the standards review and revision process and the online standards feedback system can be found at http://www.cde.state.co.us/standardsandinstruction/casreview.

Go directly to the online standards feedback system at https://www.cde.state.co.us/apps/costandardsreview/login.

Inviting Public Comment on Colorado's ESSA State Plan Draft

In order to demonstrate that Colorado meets the requirements of ESSA and to access the funding allocated to the state, CDE must submit a plan to the United States Department of Education for approval. Fundamental to the requirements of the ESSA plan, is that the department engage in meaningful consultation with a broad range of education stakeholders in developing the plan and, once a draft of the plan has been completed, to make the plan available for public comment. The draft of this plan will be open for public comment for 30 days, beginning on Friday, February 10, 2017, and closing on Friday, March 10, 2017.

There are two ways to submit your comments on Colorado’s ESSA State Plan:
  1. Visit our online portal to access the survey or upload a document: http://www.cde.state.co.us/fedprograms/essastateplanfeedback, or
  2. Mail your comments to: Colorado Department of Education, Federal Programs Unit, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1100, Denver, CO 80202-5149.
We invite you to read the letter from Commissioner Anthes on Colorado’s ESSA State Plan Development and release of the state plan draft prior to submitting your comments: http://www.cde.state.co.us/fedprograms/essapubliccommentletter.

This stage of Colorado’s ESSA plan development is important as it is your chance to react to the plan. The comments we receive from you will be compiled and incorporated into the plan as appropriate. Next, the plan will be reviewed with the Governor and ultimately presented to Colorado’s State Board of Education for approval to submit to the U.S. Department of Education in April.

CDE also intends to post a draft of the state plan in Spanish and encourages members of the public to contact us at essaquestions@cde.state.co.us with any questions or requests related to accessibility.

This Week in Math Ed: February 17, 2017

Here's yet another abbreviated edition of TWiME.

Math Ed Said

February 10: People were sharing a recent interview with John Urschel from HBO's Real Sports.

Shared by: Andrew Gael, Andrew Stadel, Denise Spangler, Kristin Gray, Janice Novakowski, Sarah Bush, Kimberly Wassmuth, NCTM

February 11: Sometimes mathematicians play football, sometimes they do magic. "Raymond Smullyan, Puzzle-Creating Logician, Dies at 97" wrote the New York Times. Here's a 1982 appearance by Smullyan on The Tonight Show:

Shared by: Keith Devlin, Jorge Nuno Silva, Kent Haines, Jim Wilder, Justin Lanier, Eddi Vulić, Steven Strogatz

February 12: I'll admit, I don't know exactly why people were sharing Sara VanDerWerf's "Secondary Number Talks (I'll convince you with ducks)" post from last year. I can only say it was a good post then, and people obviously think it's still a good post now.

Shared by: rosa, Susan Davidson, Ben Braun, Kate Nowak, Geoff Krall, Lisa Bejarano, Morgan Fierst, Melinda Knapp, Nicole Bridge, Amanda Jansen

February 13: People were sharing the Washington Post story, "Justice Department warned White House that Flynn could be vulnerable to Russian blackmail, officials say."

Shared by: Ilana Horn, Spencer Bagley, John Allen Paulos, Keith Devlin, Mister Ed, Matthew Haden

February 14: Another day, another political story: "Trump Campaign Aides Had Repeated Contacts With Russian Intelligence."

Shared by: Keith Devlin, Paul Morris, Kathy Henderson, Mister Ed, John Allen Paulos, Spencer Bagley, Samuel Otten, Kenneth Tilton, Kay Endriss

Comment: It seems one or two political stories make their way into TWiME each week, which is lower than I'd imagine given how much attention politics is getting on Twitter. I think math still surfaces to the top in TWiME because there are so many political news outlets that the same links aren't shared by everybody.

If you really want something math ed and Russia-related, maybe you should check out the work of Daniil Elkonin (1904-1984) and Vasily Davydov (1930-1998), students of Lev Vygotsky. I don't know all that much about them myself, but the Encyclopedia of Mathematics Education tells me that Elkonin and Davydov an approach to learning math built on two principles: (1) dialectical logic, where general ideas are established before more advanced, specific ideas are developed, and (2) learning from one's own activity and building mathematical ideas from their origin. Like I said, I don't know all that much about Davydov, but I can already tell that I'd need to read a lot more about this before those two principles would make sense to me. But if you wanted something Russian but also math ed, that's what came to mind.

February 15: Robert Kaplinsky warned us to Beware of Fake Math Modeling Problems." Robert finds an example where modeling seems to partly be the "smaller version of" kind of modeling, and then the questions students are expected to answer really aren't there to help them understand what's happening in the thing they're supposed to be modeling.

Shared by: Lisa Melton Pizzuto, Michelle Dupree, Zack Miller, Kate Fisher, Andrew Gael, Andrew Browning-Couch, Math Coach Rivera, Mike Flynn, Lindel

February 16: People were sharing some of the accessibility features found in Desmos.

Shared by: Denise Green, Rosa Serratore, Daniel Luevanos, Jason Merrill, Martin Joyce, Jen Silverman, Cathy Yenca, Eli Luberoff