Welcome to MCTM's e-Newsletter!

MI Math Community

August 2021


Best viewed on a desktop or go HERE to see as webpage.

See the end for: For the Love of Math, Integer Games & Activities, Astronaut Abby, Rich Math Task resources for all grades

Resources & Guiding Documents for Planning

Wrap Up: MCTM's 72nd Annual Conference

July 27 & 28, 2021

Over 150 participants attended MCTM's first virtual two-day annual conference.

This year’s conference provided sessions and experiences in four strands:

     Effective Teaching Practices

     Building Knowledge for Teaching

     Teachers as Leaders & Change Agents

     Creating Inclusive Spaces & Promoting Social Justice

Due to the virtual nature of this event, the Conference Committee was able to recruit speakers that normally would have been unable to travel to our in-person event and many participants were able to attend for the same reason. 

Thanks go out to our line-up of phenomenal speakers, sponsors, and to all on the Conference Committee (listed below) who volunteered their time and expertise to make this event happen.

The next two issues will give a snapshot of some of the many valuable sessions offered and we hope to have more content from our awesome presenters features in future issues of MI Math Community

Tuesday Keynote: Poetry Empowered, The Diatribe

A powerful opening to our event, The Diatribe uses performing arts to empower young people to share their stories, raise awareness of social issues, and create change within their communities. Gleason, Foster and Sprout shared not only their stories but ideas on how to help 'humanize' mathematics classrooms. Visit their website for information on assemblies, programs, and free curriculum. 

"Measuring success by numbers is restrictive and doesn't make space for the nuances of the human experience." - Sprout

“Find ways to interweave story-telling into your classroom so your students can see themselves in mathematics.” - Foster

How do we humanize math class? Some students fail English class because they don’t understand the power of their story. Far too often students don’t utilize the things they have been taught. Giving young people the information in a way they can relate to and that excites them is one way to humanize math classroom. Also, humanize yourself for your students so that they can see your classroom as a safe place and you, the teacher, as a safe person.

Wednesday Keynote: Our Children are NOT Numbers: Humanizing Mathematics Assessment Practices, Shelbi Cole & Michelle Sperling

"Do not start with the mentality of fixing kids, instead use data to think about what is and isn't working at the system level."

"It’s changed my teaching so much, because I’m not so much focused on the correct answer but on the information I get about the student’s thinking…" 
 - Michelle Sperling 

What have we gained by humanizing mathematics?

This Month's Highlights from T/W Sessions

Integrate Problem Solving, Modeling, Technology, Relevant Data with Important Social Issues -- Tom Reardon

Tom's session drew connections amongst multiple representations with the parent functions and allowed “students” (i.e. session participants) to explore the similarities/differences. This session pushed participants to deepen their understanding of mathematics so they may be better equipped to teach their high school students.

Manipulatives as a Tool for Differentiation Kevin Dykema 

“A struggling student vs. a student who struggles. The words we use are important.” 

When students get a new video game, they don’t read the directions. They dive right in and are OK with making mistakes along the way. However, that is NOT how we teach mathematics. Why don’t we let them ‘dive right in’ first? Combining a strategy with a manipulative tool is very powerful. Kevin also touched on mathematical rules that expire over time. Curious? A future issue will contain an article devoted to this topic!

The Area Model – From Kindergarten to CalculusTony Hawk

Mr. Hawk led a dynamic and energetic session that walked attendees through the grad level connections of the area model. Seeing the representations side-by-side shows students that there is a story to be told and students then see the connections.

Using Area Models to Teach Multiplying, Factoring, and Dividing Polynomials -- Rhonda Pierre

This session introduced and allowed teachers to explore how the area model may be used as a tool to help participants better understand the polynomials. This session leveraged the model to push conceptual understanding and gave adequate time for members to solve problems, ask questions and apply the approach to their context.

Next month's issue will highlight more sessions!

Using Python to Squeeze the Fun Back Into Math

Becky Byler, Kelly Walsh High School, Wyoming; Regional T³™ instructor; Nationally Board Certified & AP® Computer Science Principles exam reader.

Have you heard the BIG news?
Python is now included in the new TI-84 Plus CE Python graphing calculator! What does this mean for math class? Python on the handheld gives teachers a tool to teach algorithmic thinking, provide authentic opportunities for problem solving, and enhance mathematical reasoning. Using coding to teach and explore mathematics uses all the math practice standards. Plus, when you teach students Python, you’ll be introducing them to one of the most widely used programming languages across a variety of industries.

You might be asking: Just how can coding be used to enhance math instruction?
Let’s look at one possible example: quadratics. We all teach it. What are some of the key ideas students should understand about quadratics? <<<Continue Reading by clicking on the button below>>>

Continue Reading!

Show off your unique flair with a graphing calculator that’s all you. Paint or decorate the cover, graph a fun design, or even 3D-print a super-customized logo — anything goes when it comes to your creative style.

Enter the photo contest for your chance to win great prizes

·        Post photos of your customized calculator case, beautiful graph drawing or creative code on a public Twitter or Instagram using #TICalcContest.**

·        Be automatically entered for a chance to win weekly prizes, featuring a brand-new TI graphing calculator of your choice and a fun math swag box that includes a T-shirt, tote bag, notebook and more.

·        At the end of the contest, one person will be selected to win the glowing grand prize package detailed below.

·        The contest runs through Sept. 15, 2021 (see contest rules for full details).

Glow up your calculator and light up your wall

The grand prize winner will receive a totally unique, custom-made Math is Lit neon sign — in addition to all the featured prizes in our weekly giveaways.

That means one crazy-creative contestant wins it all: the custom neon sign, a brand-new TI graphing calculator and the math swag box with loads of cool stuff!

Contest Rules & Guidelines

Free Text Messaging Service for Families Aims to Improve Children's Literacy

"A new public library service for families, called "TALK: Text and Learn for Kindergarten," will help build early literacy skills for young children, the Library of Michigan announced today. "

MDE Press Release

This our series that focuses on the SMPs across grade levels. We are coordinating with Professor of Education and Mathematics Patricio Herbst and Assistant Research Scientist Amanda Milewski from the University of Michigan to bring MI Math Community readers information and opportunities around the Standards of Mathematical Practices.  District math specialists and curriculum leaders are encouraged to reach out to discuss ways of providing professional development to larger groups of teachers.

SMP7: Look for and Make Use of Structure

The Common Core State Standards for Mathematical Practice #7 states that students should learn to  "look for and make use of structure”.  In this module, participants will have the opportunity to engage with an instructional scenario drawn from the secondary algebra curriculum.  Specifically, participants will observe, annotate, and read other participants’ annotations of a scenario in which students are working to solve a linear equation. In the scenario, students are unsure regarding the validity of arithmetic operations and must “step back for an overview and shift perspective." After considering various ways the teacher could support SMP #7, participants will have the opportunity to try implementing the SMP with their own students and receive feedback from an online facilitator.

The course will award 5 SCECHs upon completion. Visit https://lessonsketch.catalog.instructure.com/ to enroll for $75 (use the code MCTM1).

Visit the Newsletter Page for a SPECIAL document showing the progression of ALL eight mathematical standards throughout the grade levels as well as a document focusing on High School. 

The Chasing Einstein Challenge is a 9-week activity for 3rd-12th grade students designed to help them become creative and persistent problem solvers. Click on the image below to go to the video or click HERE. These materials are free for classroom teachers to use!

This Challenge asked students to view the video  and then complete PolyUp puzzles . Students are then asked (1) How does looking for patterns and making connections help you in math? and (2) What did you find difficult about the Polyup puzzles? How did you help yourself?

Gamblers Ruin?

Probability & The Detroit Tigers

Welcome back to Mel Billik, long-time contributor to MCTM's former journal Mathematics in Michigan and retired HS/College Michigan educator! In this article he explores the application of high school probability to baseball! 

Full Article: Gamblers Ruin?

One of our readers brought this video to our attention. Homemade Mathematics goes through a variety of games & activities that can be used to practice integer operations. Click on the image below or go HERE to see the video AND get links to the activities themselves.

Where do you go to find Rich Math Tasks?

MCTM Board Member Conni Crittenden passed along this information that was shared through our parent organization NCTM. Our Fav Places to Find Rich Math Tasks by Margie Pearse & Lane Walker. Here are a few FREE to share. 

  • AGREE or DISAGREE MATH AGREE/DISAGREE MATH: Gr 2-5 images are designed to start robust discussion by @timsmccaffrey
  • CASTILLO - 3-ACT TASKS Catherine Castillo created some amazing 3-Act Tasks for all grades. @MsCastillosMath
  • CLOTHESLINE MATH Clothesline Math is a manipulatable number line that makes the facilitation of class discourse on number sense much more efficient and effective.  @MathProjects and @mr_stadel
  • BETWEEN TWO NUMBERS Practice estimating skills with a context as you compare the reasonableness between two numbers @fawnpnguyen

Looking for Personal Finance Curriculum or PD?

Another reader lead us to this website of free resources:

"Whether you're looking for a full course or a quick bell ringer to kick off class, NGPF has the resources for you! Choose from a wide selection of customizable, ready-to-use courses, lessons, and activities to teach personal finance at both the high school and middle school levels."

Astronaut Abby!

Abigail Harrison dreams of becoming the first astronaut to Mars. Using with her website and Facebook page, Abby encourages students to pursue their dreams and promotes STEM education. At age 18, she founded a non-profit to "educate and excite kids and adults about space exploration and STEM education"." Maybe you've seen her TedTalk "What's Your Mars?"  Her post "Positive Self Talk: How To Be Your #1 Cheerleader" will resonate with students!

Looking to motivate & inspire your students this school year? Visit www.astronautabby.com. Her post "How to Stop Procrastination Today!" might be a beginning-of-the-year conversation to have with students!

Welcome to MI Math Community! One of MCTM’s renewed initiatives is a monthly e-newsletter to share information about mathematics, mathematics education, and the happenings of MCTM. 

Have an idea or topic you’d like to see included? Have a short article to submit for publication consideration? Want to give feedback? Please email MCTM Publications Director and MI Math Community Editor Christine Kincaid Dewey at  Publications@mictm.org . Look for the e-newsletter to develop and grow over time based on member input.

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