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Moving Students from Arithmetic to Algebra step at a time

In this course we will examine a continuum of student work from the Math Forum's Problems of the Week archive. Selected work will include a range of examples from "not knowing how to start" to "It's perfect. What could I possibly say to her?" We will consider specific ways to move students' thinking along this continuum.

We will experience assisting students in:

  • Analyzing a problem quantitatively
  • Using mathematical representations
  • Recognizing generalization in these representations

view syllabus or download as: PDF file

NOTE: The next scheduled course is a four week intensive version. Assume that what is noted for Weeks 1 & 2 in the six-week version of the syllabus will be covered during Week 1, what is noted for Weeks 3 & 4 will be covered during Week 2, Weeks 5 & 6, will be covered during Week 3.

  This moderated course will be led by Max Ray-Riek, Project Manager. It will take place online using Canvas. The only technical requirements are a web browser and Internet access.

Who: upper elementary and middle school teachers


August 11 - 31, 2011
Registration closes at 5 pm EST on Thursday, August 11, 2011. There will be approximately 15 hours of seat-work involved in this course.

Note: this course is an intensive 3-week summer session. There will be four deadlines per week, rather than the usual two.

Credit: All individuals who successfully complete the course will receive a certificate indicating that they have completed 15 hours of professional development. This is equivalent to 1.5 Continuing Education Units (CEUs).

In this course you will:

  • participate in activities designed to enhance your enjoyment of problem solving.
  • develop an awareness of the rich mathematical possibilities in contextualized problems.
  • learn more about the continuum from arithmetic to algebra.
  • expand your experiences with student thinking.
  • participate in an ongoing community of problem solving teachers.

Course activities will include:

  • reading How Do I Focus the Conversation on the Mathematics?
  • discussing understandings and questions about the readings.
  • analyzing student thinking.
  • reading How Do I Move the Conversation Toward Written Representations?
  • reading and discussing Moving Toward Abstraction.
  • sharing ideas and reflections with coursemates through online journals and discussions.

Please email me with any questions.

Max Ray-Riek, Project Manager

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