Tracy Zager’s professor told students it would take five years to become a skillful math teacher. In this message to beginning educators, Zager shares insights that can help push the process. Most important: “Become addicted to listening to students’ mathematical ideas.”
Christopher Danielson used to hate teaching geometry. Now he sees it as a playground of mathematical ideas for middle schoolers, with opportunities for exploration, wonder, and smart conversations. Here Danielson shares ideas and images teachers can use to begin the fun.
Children’s writer and systems engineer Robert Black, who is finishing his third mathematical novel for middle schoolers, describes the challenges of making math stories engaging and offers tips for students and teachers interested in the new fiction genre.
Many students don’t expect math to make sense and learn to disengage their reasoning and even distrust it. Teacher-experts Cathy Humphreys & Ruth Parker highlight an 8-step “Number Talks” process that can promote deeper discussions about how numbers work.
Common Core math experts Leslie Texas & Tammy Jones offer strategies (and free tools) to help students become mathematical thinkers. “The key, they say, is to “seamlessly interweave” the CCSS mathematical practices with content instruction.