"The focus of today's professional development was to continue planning math units around big ideas and concepts and sequencing units to the school year" commented Sally Stolly, Benjamin Logan Curriculum Director. The teachers (pictured) have been asked to focus deeply on the major work of each grade so that students gain strong foundations as well as demonstrate the ability to apply the math they know to solve problems inside and outside the math classroom.
In an effort to deepen the way time and energy is spent in the math classroom, the teachers have been working diligently to implement the key shifts in the Common Core State Standards using tools shared by Ann Carlson, an Ohio Department of Education, Mathematics Consultant.
The middle school math teachers also spent time learning more about the PARCC assessment system (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers). “The PARCC questions will not be a walk in the park for the students" stated 7th grade math teacher, Tom Braddock. The assessments include a mix of item types (e.g., short answer, richer multiple choice, longer open response, and performance-based). Future assessments will make significant use of technology. The future tests will be administered via computer and, to the extent possible, scored via computer so that teachers, students, and parents can get results back very quickly. Jana Mitchell, 8th grade math teacher, commented “The Mathematics Common Core State Standards will provide our students with the necessary reasoning skills to be college or career ready.”