The Center for Teaching/Learning of Mathematics in Framingham, Massachusetts, offers several mathematics teaching workshops to help teachers and parents teach math effectively.
These workshops help teachers and parents teach mathematics milestone concepts and procedures. We use a new teaching approach called Vertical Acceleration, this approach begins with a simple concept from arithmetic and takes it to the algebraic level.
Mathematics Education Workshop Series
Several professional national groups, the National Mathematics Advisory Panel and the Institute for Educational Sciences, in particular, have concluded that all students can learn mathematics and most can succeed through Algebra 2. However, the abstractness and complexity of algebraic concepts and missing precursor skills and understandings—number conceptualization, arithmetic facts, place value, fractions, and integers may be overwhelming to many students and teachers.
Being proficient at arithmetic is certainly a great asset when we reach algebra; however, how we achieve that proficiency can also matter a great deal. The criteria for mastery, Common Core State Standards in Mathematics (CCSSM) — sets for arithmetic for early elementary grades are specific: students should have (a) understanding (efficient and effective strategies), (b) fluency, and (c) applicability and will ensure that students form strong, secure, and developmentally appropriate foundations for the algebra that students learn later. The development of those foundations is assured if we implement the Standards of Mathematics Practices (SMP) along with the CCSSM content standards.
In these workshops, we provide strategies; understanding and pedagogy that can help teachers achieve these goals.
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Improve Math Performance for All Learners
Participants will learn how to provide access to meaningful mathematics in more efficient ways for all learners. Providing students access to optimal mathematics instruction depends on the consideration of three factors: 1. Understanding the nature of mathematics content. (What is being taught?) 2. Understanding learning characteristics and learner differences. (Who is being taught? What does the child bring to the learning task?) 3. Understanding teaching models and teacher characteristics. (How should one teach?)
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How One Learns Mathematics
This workshop focuses on psychology and the processes of learning mathematics including concepts, skills, and procedures. Participants study the role of factors such as cognitive development, language, mathematics learning personality, pre-requisite skills, and conceptual models of learning mathematics.
They learn to understand how key mathematics milestones such as number conceptualization, place value, fractions, integers, algebraic thinking, and spatial sense are achieved.
The Nature & Causes of Learning Problems in Mathematics
This workshop focuses on understanding the nature and causes of learning problems in mathematics. We examine existing research on diagnosis and techniques for dealing with these problems. Participants become familiar with diagnostic and assessment instruments for learning problems in mathematics.