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Volume 3, Number 10

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9 March 1998                                   Vol. 3, No. 10

  Pi Day | NCTM Standards 2000 | TIMMS Results - 12th Grade

                       PI DAY - MARCH 14

     "Thank you for the electronic newsletter each week. 
      I look forward to it. Do you have any resource to
      which we can refer for a celebration of pi on
      March 14?"

You're welcome!  Here is a site that might be useful, one 
with a pizza project for Pi Day:  

- Activities for Pi Mathematics:

- Ivars Peterson's articles are always readable:

- Ask Dr. Math has a whole section of answers to questions 
  about pi:

- Use your browser's FIND function to look for sites 
  about pi on the Math Forum's ABOUT NUMBERS page:

- Visit Yahoo's Pi Page (Mathematics:Numbers:Specific Numbers:Pi) 
  for songs, poetry, and much, much more:

- _The Joy of Pi_ by David Blatner is a wonderful little
  book that makes clear why so many have been fascinated by
  this number. Search


Do you celebrate Pi Day in your classes?  If you do, we'd
like to hear about it. Send a description or a URL
illustrating your favorite project to  

and we'll put the  best on the Web to spark the imaginations 
of other teachers.



A new discussion group devoted to public input on the 
NCTM Standards 2000 project to update, clarify, and 
synthesize K12 mathematics standards in the United States.

This discussion will cover issues instrumental in the 
development of the draft of the Standards 2000 document, 
due to be released in fall of 1998. Questions to be posted
by the moderator will include such concerns as areas of 
mathematics deserving of emphasis, mathematical thinking
skills, philosophies and practices, basic skills and
conceptual understanding, and access and equity.

To participate in the discussion, select the URL given above
or point your browser to 
and click on "join the discussion...." You will see a list 
of topics currently being discussed; when you select a 
topic, messages posted on that topic will be listed. You 
can read these messages and add your own thoughts, or post 
a message on a new topic.

If you do not have access to the Web, you may comment on
Standards 2000 by e-mailing or sending 
regular mail to 

      Future of the NCTM Standards
      1906 Association Dr.
      Reston, VA 20191-1593 

Sessions on Standards 2000 at which you can provide your 
input are also being held at each NCTM regional conference 
and at the annual meeting:

Conduct a search of the sessions for the phrase 
Standards 2000.



The latest results are in from the Third International 
Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). Tops in mathematics
and science literacy were the Netherlands and Sweden. 
Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, Denmark, Canada, New Zealand, 
and Austria were also above the international average of 
the 21 countries surveyed. Below the international average 
were Hungary, the Russian Federation, Italy, the United 
States, Lithuania, Cyprus, and South Africa.

  "There is something wrong with the system, and it is
   our generation's responsibility to fix it," President
   Clinton said. "You cannot blame the schoolchildren.
   There is no excuse for this." (San Francisco Chronicle)

For more on the Web and other newspaper articles, see

 - TIMSS United States 
  "Are There surprises in the TIMSS Twelfth Grade Results?" 
   Press statement by William H. Schmidt, U.S. TIMMS
   National Research Coordinator. Also "Facing the 
   Consequences," the Executive Summary (PDF format).

 - National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) - TIMSS

 - "U.S. High School Seniors Rank Near Bottom" (Washington Post)

 - "US 12th-Graders Miss the Mark" (Christian Science Monitor)


The high school results are being discussed on the MATH-TEACH 
mailing list:

See Steve Cohen's message of 25 February 1998 for the text
of the New York Times article, "U.S. High School Seniors 
Among Worst in Math and Science." For more of the discussion, 
search the archives for TIMSS:


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