18 March, 2011
Volume 16 No. 11
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In This Issue

The Math Forum at NCSM/NCTM

Math Awareness Month

Summer C.A.M.P.


Online PD


Orientation Sessions

Math and Tech Workshops


Problem Based Learning Courses

Graduate Credit:
Mathematics Teaching and Learning Certificate

Master's Degree


The Math Forum at NCSM/NCTM

Are you attending the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (NCSM) or National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) conferences in Indianapolis this April?

Math Forum staff and associates will present sessions at both conferences:

Monday 9:30 - 10:30 (NCSM session 108)
Moving Your Faculty Towards Diagnostic Teaching, Formative Assessment, and Individualized Instructional Techniques
Tuesday 10:00 - 11:00 (NCSM session 227)
Using Screen-Capture Movies to Assess Quadrilateral Constructions in Sketchpad
Wednesday 11:15 - 12:15 (NCSM session 342)
Developing Leadership in Our Mathematics Community: An Effective Model to Identify and Support Teacher Leaders

For more information on these NCSM workshop topics and details of locations and presenters, see


Thursday 11:00 - 12:00 (NCTM session 140)
Using Technology to Transform Students' Problem Solving Experiences and Perspectives
Thursday 12:30 - 1:30 (NCTM session 173)
Using Screen-Capture Movies to Assess Quadrilateral Constructions in Sketchpad
Friday 11:00 - 12:00 (NCTM session 436)
Transform Your Geometry Teaching with These Free Online Resources

For more information on these NCTM workshop topics and details of locations and presenters, see


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

"Hayne, also from Rancho San Joaquin Middle School, used the relationships a little differently, in a solution I thought was particularly unique. Rather than use different variables for rows, seeds per row, and total number of seeds, Hayne used two variables...."
- Max, commenting on the Algebra PoW's Latest Solution

Math Awareness Month


This April, the theme of Mathematics Awareness Month will be Unraveling Complex Systems.

The human heart is a prime example of a complex system. John W. Cain, a mathematician at Virginia Commonwealth University, has just published a survey of six ongoing Challenge Problems in mathematical cardiology. Cain's article emphasizes cardiac electrophysiology — the electrical wave propagation in heart tissue.

A major challenge that Cain identifies is striking a balance between feasibility and complexity: minimize complications in the model, so that it is amenable to mathematical analysis, but add sufficient detail, so that the model reproduces as much clinically relevant data as possible. The equations that govern the model — nonlinear partial differential equations — cannot be solved explicitly, and solutions must be obtained through approximation by numerical methods. Adding further complications are the intricate geometry of the heart, with its four chambers and connections to veins and arteries, and the fact that different types of cardiac tissue have different conduction properties.

Download "Taking Math to Heart: Mathematical Challenges in Cardiac Electrophysiology" from the April issue of the Notices of the American Mathematical Society:


Mathematics Awareness Month is sponsored each year by the Joint Policy Board for Mathematics, a collaborative effort of the American Mathematical Society, the American Statistical Association, the Mathematical Association of America, and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics. Visit mathaware.org for essays, linking icons, a poster, a sample press release template, and more.

Now taking place: math education conversation of the hour

"As club advisor, I am chaperoning a group of students at a conference of the National Society of Black Engineers in St. Louis next week. I just found out that our hotel is right next door to the Arch. Knowing that my teacher instincts will kick in as soon as we are within sight of the monument, I'm wondering if anyone has an introductory high-school lesson on catenary curves that s/he would be willing to share...."
- Cynthia, posted to the ap-calculus discussion

Summer C.A.M.P.


This summer, Groton School (Groton, Massachusetts) will be hosting a program in complexity theory for high school students.

Offered in partnership with the Santa Fe Institute, Complexity and Modeling Program (C.A.M.P.) is a novel immersion program that introduces teens to complexity science scholarship. Through individual projects, computer simulation activities, analysis of ecological data, lectures and seminars, students conduct research in this cutting edge field during an intensive two-week residential program.

Apply by March 31:



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