17 December, 2010
Volume 15 No. 51
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In This Issue

In Memoriam, Tom O'Brien

Best Evidence Encyclopedia

Expert Voices Gateway


Online PD


Orientation Sessions

Math and Tech Workshops

Praxis II prep:
Moving to Math


Problem Based Learning Courses

Graduate Credit:
Mathematics Teaching and Learning Certificate

Master's Degree


In Memoriam, Tom O'Brien

Tom O'Brien died last Monday. In a professional career that spanned over five decades, O'Brien taught math and researched how people learn. Along the way, he established mathplace.net and developed software such as Safari Search, Teasers by Tobbs, and Blockers and Finders.

O'Brien entrusted the Math Forum with the scanned archives of his journal Seedbed, now available online:


The Association of Teachers of Mathematics published this article about O'Brien a couple months ago, summarizing his ongoing work with math teachers:


The death of the former NATO Senior Research Fellow in Science preceded the birthdate of George Pólya by exactly one week. The two contemporaries met and corresponded on several memorable occasions, as chronicled with humor, and poignance, in the second of these personal tributes, originally published in the same UK journal:


PoW taking place: math problem-solving moment of the week

"This problem was fun. At first I made a big flaw...."
- Munther B, highlighted in the Algebra PoW's Latest Solution

Best Evidence Encyclopedia


The Best Evidence Encyclopedia (BEE) rates and summarizes reviews of math programs such as

  • The University of Chicago School Mathematics Project (UCSMP)
  • Everyday Mathematics
  • Connected Mathematics
  • Saxon Math
  • I Can Learn
  • Jostens/Compass Learning
  • SuccessMaker
  • Accelerated Math

Created by the Johns Hopkins University School of Education's Center for Data-Driven Reform in Education, with funding from the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences, BEE also provides the full text of each review.

Now taking place: math education conversation of the hour

"The basic course is called 'lyhyt' (short) and the advanced course is 'pitkä' (long). If you have other questions [about] mathematics education in Finland, I will try to answer."
- Antti R, posted to the math-teach discussion

Expert Voices Gateway


Exemplary Resources for Middle School Math and Science points middle grades teachers to the best resources on the web. With an archive of posts dating back to February, 2008, the blog also highlights current events that can serve as teaching opportunities, with rationales and alignments to national math and science standards.

Authored by teaching and learning experts from the Ohio State University, this blog contributes to the Expert Voices (EV) blogosphere of the National Science Digital Library (NSDL). All EV blogs feature Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) discussions and information of interest for teachers, students, NSDL Pathways, NSF-funded projects, and partners.


This newsletter is provided as a service of The Math Forum, an online educational community for mathematics hosted by Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA.

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