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Topic: Professional Standards XII (12/15)
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Ronald A Ward

Posts: 298
Registered: 12/4/04
Professional Standards XII (12/15)
Posted: Dec 15, 1995 2:34 PM
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This is the twelfth in a series of questions, concerns, issues, and
comments related to the NCTM's 1991 document "Professional Standards for
Teachers of Mathematics," and the last posting for the third set of
standards. Today, I will focus on Standards 5 & 6, pp 160-173. [Readers
who missed any of the previous eleven postings may e-mail me direct and I
will forward whatever you want]. Because all questions are numbered
consecutively for reference purposes, I'll start today with number 125.

Ron Ward/Western Washington U/Bellingham, WA 98225

125. I don't normally list any part of the standards since we want
people to read the document, but because Standard 5 is focused on
DEVELOPING as a teacher of mathematics and has relevance for all of us
who think of ourselves as teachers, I'll list the bulleted subtopics, and
subscribers can select any one to discuss:

"The preservice and continuing education of teachers of mathematics
should provide them with opportunities to:

*examine and revise their assumptions about the nature of
mathematics, how it should be taught, and how students learn mathematics;
*observe and analyze a range of approaches to mathematics teaching
and learning, focusing on the tasks, discourse, environment, and assessment;
*work with a diverse range of students individually, in small
groups, and in large class settings with guidance from and in
collaboration with mathematics education professionals;
*analyze and evaluate the appropriateness and effectiveness of
their teaching;
*develop dispositions toward teaching mathematics."

126. On a couple of occasions in the elaboration text, the writers
mention a "growing sense of self as teacher" or a sense of self as a
certain kind of teacher. If you feel that you have such a "sense" what
does it include? How did you develop it?

127. In Vignette 5.1, it seems to me that the question placed on the
board is a poor one;namely, "Show what is more, 2/6 or 1/3." What do you think?

128. Again, the writers have used the cross-reference chart on page 167
to illustrate each of the current subtopics in the vignettes from the second
set of standards. This is similar to what they did back in Standard 4 in
case you are utilizing such a tool in your work with students.

129. Once again, because Standard 6:The Teacher's Role in Professional
Development" clearly affects us all (as long as we're lifelong learners,
that is), I'll at least list the bulleted subtopics:

"Teachers of mathematics should take an active role in their own
professional development by accepting responsibility for:

*experimenting thoughtfully with alternative approaches and
strategies in the classroom;
*reflecting on learning and teaching individually and with colleagues;
*participating in workshops, courses, and other educational
opportunities specific to mathematics;
*participating actively in the professional community of
mathematics educators;
*reading and discussing ideas presented in professional publications;
*discussing with colleagues issues in mathematics and mathematics
teaching and learning;
*participating in proposing, designing, and evaluating programs
for professional development specific to mathematics;
*participating in school, community, and political efforts to
effect positive change in mathematics education."

I would ask, how frequently do you experiment? When do you reflect? How
do you find out about educational opportunities for yourself? Does your
school maintain and make accessible quality professional journals for
your reading?

130. In the elaboration section, the writers say that professionalism
among teachers is built through a "support system that links them to
colleagues inside and outside the schools." What kind of support system
do you have?

131. Would anyone care to comment on the statement from Vignette 6.2,
"Topics such as long division and decimals don't lend themselves readily
to the use of manipulatives"?

132. In Vignette 6.3, there is a discussion of one practice in a methods
class whereby practicing teachers participate as guest speakers because
"the prospective teachers valued the opinions of practicing teachers."
Perhaps some of you could share with the listserve any special components
of your math methods classes which you find particularly effective.

This is the last Professional Standards posting I will put on the NCTM
Listserve until after the winter break, although I may write a little
"Twelve Postings of Standards" song for the holidays. :) But feel free
to comment on any of these items (as well as earlier questions) or to
pose your own questions, raise issues, express concerns or comments as
usual. As always, the intent is to encourage subscribers to familiarize
themselves with the 1991 Professional Standards and to provide a forum
for sharing ideas and discussion. Have a pleasant break.

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