This Week in Math Ed: January 6, 2017

Happy New Year! Here's the first TWiME of 2017, full of arguments for number sense, upcoming NCTM chats, and a lot of new research. If you want to see what I thought was the best of 2016, I found 30 noteworthy posts from the year's worth of TWiME in 2016.

Math Ed Said

December 30: Cory Turner of NPR writes, "Teachers Are Stressed, And That Should Stress Us All." Teachers are indicating stress levels similar to those of doctors. Thankfully, there are ways of relieving the stress.

Shared by: Lisa Choate, Nita Cochran, Shelby Aaberg, Chris Mueller, Sahar Khatri, Erika Bullock

December 31: David Radcliffe asks and answers, "Why is 2017 an interesting number?" There's a lot more going on with 2017 than being prime.

Shared by: Rebecca Gasper, Sara VanDerWerf, Mark McCourt, James Tanton, David Radcliffe

January 1: Keith Devlin wrote "All the mathematical methods I learned in my university math degree became obsolete in my lifetime" for the Huffington Post. This article is a mini-celebration of number sense, and the kind of understanding humans need to thrive with calculating machines.

Shared by: Mark Ellis, Kate Fisher, Joshua Bowman, Shauna Hedgepeth, Zack Miller, Tom Snarsky, Nerissa Gerodias, Judy Keeney, Keith Devlin

January 2: Sixteen more people shared Keith Devlin's post that became popular on New Year's Day, but an equal number were sharing "Labels Work Every Time" from the Desmos blog.

Shared by: Joshua Bowman, Nerissa Gerodias, Bryn Humberstone, Bridget Dunbar, Nolan Doyle, Jesse McNulty, Dan Anderson, Ben Rouse, Julia Finneyfrock, Aimee Shackleton, Audrey McLaren, Elizabeth Statmore,, Dan Meyer, Eddi Vulić, John Golden

January 3: In NCTM's Teaching Children Mathematics blog, Zak Champagne wrote, "2016: The year in review." He lists ten highlights from 2016 that had implications for elementary math education.

Shared by: Andrew Gael, Math Coach Rivera, Mike Flynn, TCM - NCTM, Cathy Yenca, Megan M. Allen, Zak Champagne

January 4: BEAM is short for "Bridge to Enter Advanced Mathematics" and they are seeking applicants for their summer programs. Some of those listed on the "shared by" list below have worked with BEAM and had positive things to say about the experience.

Shared by: Bethany SansingHeltn, David Keller, Dan Meyer, Michael Pershan, Jennifer Lawler, Kate Nowak

January 5: Keith Devlin's post "All The Methods I Learned In My Mathematics Degree Became Obsolete In My Lifetime" stayed popular throughout the week and was again most-shared on the 5th.

Shared by: Math Coach Rivera, Denis Sheeran, Ruth Knop, Jo Boaler, Jocelyn Dagenais, Matthew Oldridge, Beth Curran, Museum of Math, Jen Silverman, Keith Devlin

Around the Math Ed Web

Hidden Figures movie poster
Hidden Figures hit theaters nationwide this week and the reactions I've seen in my circles has been nothing but positive. I anticipated as much, so earlier in the week I assembled a list of Hidden Figures resources that could be useful to teachers and students. Annie Perkins has a similar list. I saw the movie Thursday night and I'm about halfway through the book. Not mentioned in the movie is that many of the "colored computers" had been math teachers prior to working in research, as teaching was generally the best job available for an African American woman with training in mathematics.

The Joint Math Meetings were this past week. I admit that I don't follow the JMM closely, but I know there were a number of math ed presentations. You can learn more from the JMM website or the #JMM2017 hashtag.

NCTM now has articles for all their chats this month:
Here's what's recent and upcoming from the Global Math Department:

Research Notes

The Journal for Research in Mathematics Education is out with their first issue of 2017:
The February 2017 issue of Educational Studies in Mathematics is here:
A couple articles have been added to the March 2017 issue of The Journal of Mathematical Behavior:
New in AERA Open:
Here's one last issue for the Journal of Statistics Education for 2016:
The first issue of the open access journal Numeracy is out:

Math Ed in the News

Math Ed in Colorado

Colorado Math Leaders

A CML meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, January 11 from 9:00 to noon in Pueblo. CML has had inconsistent attendance so far this school year (perhaps a result of inconsistent scheduling), so stay tuned to the CML mailing list if there are any last-minute changes.

Rocky Mountain Math Teachers' Circle

The Rocky Mountain Math Circle is meeting this Saturday from 8:30 to noon in Denver. See the RMMTC website for more information and to RSVP.

Also, mark your calendars for two summer workshops:
  • Southwest Colorado and Rocky Mountain Math Teachers' Circle workshop in Durango, June 12-16
  • Rocky Mountain Math Teachers' Circle in Denver, June 19-23

Online Standards Review System Extended Until Feb. 17

As CDE continues to develop its plan to guide the upcoming standards review and revision process, the department is actively seeking feedback on the Colorado Academic Standards from all interested parties. In November, CDE launched an online standards review system which enables all Coloradoans to provide specific feedback on each and every expectation within all 10 content areas of the Colorado Academic Standards. To provide sufficient time for meaningful feedback, the department has extended the timeline to provide feedback to Friday, February 17, 2017.

The results of the feedback received through the online system will inform the department's planning for the upcoming review and revision of the standards, 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.

In early 2017, CDE will provide comprehensive information about the timeline and phases of the standards review and revision process as well as information about how to become involved.

The online standards feedback system can be found at


The nominations are now open for PAEMST awards for 7-12 math teachers to be awarded in 2017.

Math on the "Planes"

Registration for next February's conference is open. The focus will be Tier 1 and Tier 2 interventions for K-5 math students, with Dr. Karen Karp as the workshop leader. CCLD encourages you to apply for a Mikkelson Mathematics and Science Teachers Scholarship to cover the costs, as MOTP attendees from outside the metro area are eligible for travel, lodging, and registration reimbursement.

PARCC Released Items

PARCC has released a new set of items for grades 3-8. These are items that have been used on operational test multiple times and were slated for retirement, and the set of items approximates the content coverage of a typical test. High school items should be released in early 2017.