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It feels like Spring
already in Georgia, meaning we’re moving toward the end of the
school year and the Milestone testing season. This often is a time
for rapidly completing the content standards for mathematics as well
as making a mad dash to review all the big ideas for the year.
Ideally, the furor of the end of the year is layered within the
Standards for Mathematical Practice, offering students the
opportunity to take ownership of their grade level mathematical
concepts. In other words, it’s time for teachers to talk less and
students to talk more!
The summer of 2016
offers a superb opportunity for us here in Georgia as the National
Council of Teachers of Mathematics will host their summer
institutes, Engaging Students in Learning: Mathematical
Practices. Sessions for grades K-8 will be offered July 11-13
while sessions for grades 9 through 12 will be offered July 14th
through July 16th. The various workshop sessions and keynote
addresses in Atlanta this summer are all designed to support
Understand that the
Common Core mathematical practices and NCTM process standards
are integral to teaching and learning.
strategies that enable students to experience and to develop the
habits of mind of a mathematically proficient student.
content through the lens of the mathematical practices and
process standards, as well as the teaching and learning
standards from Principles to Actions.
Engage in activities
related to task selection, development and implementation both
during and after the Institute.
The Georgia Council of
Teachers of Mathematics will support the NCTM Summer Institute 2016
and has put aside our own summer academies in this effort.
Please go here to find more information as well as to register
and find housing for these events.
Georgia Council of Teachers of Mathematics have designed two
different scholarship opportunities that total up to $10,000 to
support some GCTM members who wish to attend the NCTM Summer
Institute in Atlanta. The two levels of these scholarships are
here. Please take advantage of this terrific opportunity to
attend sessions related to your appropriate grade levels. The
classroom implementation of the Georgia Standards for Excellence for
Mathematics continues to offer us opportunities to grow as
facilitators of learning for our students. What an opportunity to
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Several events were sponsored at the capitol during the 2016
Lunch and Learn
Brooks Coleman, Chairman of the House Education Committee, sponsored
a Lunch and Learn on Thursday, January 28, 2016 for members of the
House Education Committee and Senate Education and Youth Committee
and other interested legislators. GCTM President Kaycie Maddox and
Denise Huddlestun, VP for Advocacy spoke to the agenda items: 21st
Century Workforce Skills; Developing Skills through a Quality
Mathematics Education Program; and the Mission and Objectives of
GCTM. Legislators spent over an hour at the event and had the
opportunity to engage in a discussion during a question and answer
period about mathematics education. The twenty legislators who
attended were provided with a document outlining necessary Soft
Skills and the Standards for Mathematical Practice as well as a
bookmark with information about GCTM, its mission and objectives,
the annual conference, the upcoming NCTM Summer Institute and the
support being provided for members to attend, and the awards given
annually at the Georgia Math Conference to promote and recognize
excellence in the teaching of mathematics in Georgia.
Math Day at the
The third annual Math Day at the Capitol occurred on Monday,
February 8, 2016. Representative Mike Dudgeon wrote a resolution
[link resolution to the PDF Den4_MathDay] to recognize Monday,
February 8, 2016 as Math Day at the Capitol. Members of GCTM seated
in the gallery stood and were recognized when Representative Brooks
Coleman introduced the
resolution on the floor of the House of Representative.
GCTM members attending Math Day at
Representative Mike Dudgeon presents resolution to recognize
the Math Day at the Capitol.
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Something special is happening for professional learning this summer
of 2016! The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM)
will be holding the following Summer Institutes in Atlanta:
For more information
about NCTM’s Summer Institutes, refer to the
flyer or to go the website found at Math
Professional Development Institutes - National Council of Teachers
The Georgia Council of
Teachers of Mathematics (GCTM) would like our members to experience
this wonderful opportunity for professional development. So, in lieu
of holding our annual GCTM Summer Academies, we are offering
scholarships to GCTM members to help those interested attend the
NCTM Summer Institutes. The GCTM Summer Learning Scholarship
provides applicants up to $200 towards the cost of attending the
NCTM Summer Institute. The deadline for submitting the scholarship
application is May 15, 2016. Details for this scholarship can be
GCTM Summer Learning Scholarship | GCTM. The short
online application requires applicants to provide contact
information, and state that the applicant is a member of GCTM.
Applicants must also explain why he or she wants to attend the
institute, how the funding will him or her attend the summer
institute, and how the applicant plan to use the information learned
in your classroom.Priority is given to applicants who are driving
more than 100 miles, have limited funding from other sources, or who
make a compelling argument in the application. APPLICATIONS MUST BE
SUBMITTED BY SUNDAY, MAY 15, 2016. All applicants will be sent an
email no later than June 1, 2016, stating whether or not their
applications were selected for funding.
GCTM Partners in Professional Learning Grant provides $1500
toward the cost of two teachers to partner in professional
development. The grant pays the Summer Institute registration fee in
full for the two teachers selected and gives them up to $750 towards
the cost of travel and lodging. One grant will be awarded to two
partner teachers in each of these grade bands: K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and
9-12. This is a great opportunity for GCTM to partner with our
members and for our members to experience important professional
development with a friend. The deadline for submitting grant
applications is April 15, 2016. Details for this grant can be found
Please save these dates
and make plans see us at NCTM Summer Institutes 2016.We are excited
to have this event held in our own backyard. See you there!
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mathematical artwork was submitted by Clair Fuller, a 4th grade
student attending King Springs Elementary in Cobb County. This
radial design features a kaleidoscope of bright colors and striking
rotational symmetry. Lovely!
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The development of
students’ understanding as the Georgia curriculum has become more
conceptually based over the past 10 years. Students need to do more
physically engaging math rather than just sitting and listening to a
lesson every day. They are movers and doers which is why the tools
and manipulatives are so important to their conceptual understanding
of the math content.
As a middle school
teacher, I am always looking for tools and strategies that help my
students understand mathematics conceptually. I feel that if I am
always striving to learn something new, it motivates my students to
learn new things. There are tools and manipulatives that I have used
for certain activities, but I am beginning to find new ways to use
them. I have used square tiles with 6th grade to show perimeter and
area, but I never imagined they could be used to help 8th grade
students conceptually understand estimating square roots.
View the Scavenger Hunt resources.
Ashley Clody teaches math at
Awtrey Middle School in Cobb County. She has been teaching middle
school math for ten years. She has been a member of GCTM for the
past 11 years as either a student member or teacher member.
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love this time of year. Flowers are blooming. Birds are singing.
There is an extra hour of sunlight at the end of our days. Spring
Break lingers just around the corner promising to give deserving
teachers and students alike a restful break from typical classroom
hustles and bustles. Usually around this time of year we usually
celebrate Pi Day on March 14th. In previous Spring issues,
Reflections has even highlighted Pi Day and related activities;
however, this year there is a rarer, yet just as interesting
mathematical holiday up for recognition – Square Root Day!
Square Root days are
mathematically celebrated days where both the day of the month and
the month are the square root of the last two digits of the year.
This year, April 4, 2016, or 4/4/16, is a Square Root day. This is
not to be taken lightly as the next Square Root Day will not occur
until 5/5/25! Some of our GCTM members will be retired by the next
time a Square Root Day rolls around, so how can we celebrate this
holiday with our students this year? Here are a few ideas:
Define a Square Root
Day and have students think of the nine the Square Root Days
that occur within each century. Why are there exactly nine
Square Root Days per century? What is special about the number
of years between the consecutive Square Root Days in a century?
this resource to find out more.
compete to make the biggest, most radical square root sign.
this reference to discover more sign ideas.
Serve rootbeer in
square glasses in class.
discuss which day of the century is a commonly celebrated
American holiday and a Square Root Day. (Hint: How many more
weeks of winter are we going to have?)
Sing Take Me Out to
the Ball Game where you root, toot, toot for the home
a Square Root meal incorporating square cut root veggies
(potatoes, carrots, turnips, and radishes) or making carrot
cake. Don’t forget the home fries!
Have students find
articles about Square Root day.
Have a contest to
see who can recite the most perfect square numbers.
Create Square Root
cards to mark the day and have students distribute them to their
favorite teachers or friends.
Try square dancing!
Don’t forget to
focus on the beauty of mathematics! Talk to your students about
square root sequences, the square root function, and
applications of square roots such as finding the length of a
square given its area.
Find out more ideas on
how to celebrate this rare holiday at
Mental Floss. Please consider writing us to tell us how it went!
Have a radical
Square Root day!
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Action research is an
effective tool that allows teachers to reflect about their teaching
practices while connecting educational theory and research to
classroom instruction. In the present study, I (Dr. Halimun) used
two learning tasks and addressed the following research question:
Does my classroom discourse show a student-centered pattern? Through
this study, I discovered a performance gap between my
standards-based intentions and my actual classroom practice.
After teaching high school mathematics for twelve years, I
unwittingly believed my teaching aligned with the reform vision
elaborated in the Principles and Standards for School Mathematics
(NCTM 2000), hereafter called the standards. However, discussions
and readings in graduate classes about practices of critical
reflection unsettled this belief. When a teacher consistently
examines his/her practice, reviews problems and makes improvements,
it is referred to as reflective teaching (Qing 2013). The call to be
reflective compelled me to verify that my standards-based teaching
intentions matched my classroom practices. Thus, I launched an
action research project to examine the following question: Does my
classroom discourse show a student-centered pattern? Focusing on
whole-classroom discourse a type of mathematical discourse that
receives extensive attention in the standards I entered the realm
of research necessary to connect educational theory to my classroom
practice. Although the study was conducted in my classroom, Dr.
Kohler provided valuable resources on teacher reflection to
illuminate the new knowledge base in teaching practice.
Dr. Jeni Halimun
completed her doctorate in mathematics education at Kennesaw State
University in 2011, taught for twelve years as a high school
mathematics teacher, and taught two years of college level
mathematics. She is interested in teacher initiated action research
that is used to improve teaching practices and contribute to
Dr. Debbie Kohler received her
Doctorate in Mathematics Teaching and Learning at Kennesaw State
University in 2010. For over 30 years, she taught high school
mathematics including AP Calculus and AP Statistics. She is
interested in teaching with questioning techniques, gender equity in
mathematics and calculator fluency research. She is currently a
part-time instructor in the Department of Statistics at KSU and an
AP reader for the AP Statistics exam.
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Middle School Math
Are you interested in challenging your middle school students?
Register your students for the GCTM Middle School Math Tournament!
The date is Saturday, April 23, and the location is Thomson Middle
School in Centerville. The registration fee is $20 if the teacher is
not a member of GCTM, and only $10 for members. More information and
a registration form can be found on the
Competitions page of the GCTM website. You can also get your
students prepared for the tournament by practicing previous year’s
materials found in the GCTM Middle School Math Tournament Book:
State Math Tournament
Invitations to the State Math Tournament are sent to the high
school sponsor’s email by April 2. This year’s State Math Tournament
will be Saturday, April 30 at Middle Georgia State University.
Registration is free since schools must be invited to attend. More
information, including how teams are invited, can be found on the
Competitions page of the GCTM website. Previous materials from
the State Math Tournaments going back to 1998 are collected in three
books, available on the Competitions page. These books are the best
preparation for the style, scope, and topics found on the State Math
These books offer
written tests, individual ciphering, and pair ciphering from the
years 1998 through 2015. Full solutions, and sometimes multiple
solutions, are provided along with a topic index so that students
may find any problem by topic. Any of these books would provide an
excellent resource for any Math Team sponsor or students hoping to
brush up on their problem-solving skills. (Note: All sale proceeds
go directly to GCTM and fund the State Math Tournament and ARML
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Each Fall, GCTM
recognizes distinguished members of our teaching community at the
Georgia Mathematics Conference (GMC) at Rock Eagle. We are currently
accepting nominations for each of the following awards through Math
30th. Click on the Nomination form link next to each respective
award to nominate a worthy recipient. Contact Peggy Poole or Valerie
Lemon if you have any questions about the nomination process.
Gladys M. Thomason Award for Distinguished Service:
Each year, GCTM selects one outstanding individual as the Gladys M.
Thomason Award winner. Selection is based on distinguished service
in the field of mathematics education at the local, regional, and
state levels. To be eligible for the award, the nominee must be a
member of GCTM and NCTM; be fully certified in mathematics,
elementary or middle grades education at the fourth year level or
beyond -- or if the nominee is a college professor, be at least an
assistant professor; and have had at least five years teaching or
supervisory experience in mathematics or mathematical education in
Dwight Love Award:
This award is presented to a teacher in Georgia who models
excellence in the profession and in life and gives much to others
beyond the classroom as mentor, teacher and leader. The awardee is a
master teacher, professionally active, and promotes GCTM and its
John Neff Award:
This award is presented to a member of GCTM who demonstrates
excellence as a full time post secondary educator and/or district
supervisor. The recipient is someone who is an inspirer, a mentor,
and an advocate of mathematics and mathematics education.
Awards for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics:
Three awards, one each for elementary, middle, and secondary levels,
are given to excellent teachers who have strong content foundations
in mathematics appropriate for their teaching level, show evidence
of growth in the teaching of mathematics, and show evidence of
professional involvement in GCTM and NCTM.
Teacher of Promise Award :
GCTM recognizes one outstanding new teacher/ member in the state
each year who has no more than 3 years experience at the time of the
nomination and who demonstrates qualities of excellence in the
teaching of mathematics.
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It is always so fun to
meet new faces and find old friends at The Georgia Mathematics
Conference at Rock Eagle. Many of you attend every year or as
frequently as possible. Remember that you would need to renew your
membership this year. It was not included in your conference
registration. My wish is that all of you become members of our
wonderful organization for the duration of your career and longer.
As we near the end of
our academic year, let’s make membership in GCTM a priority. A mere
$20 insures your membership in this wonderful group of educators
devoted to supporting the BEST in mathematics teaching and learning
Your participation is
our strength. We have 50+ years of excellence and that is due to our
supportive members and leaders. Unfortunately our membership numbers
are down. WE NEED YOU! You ARE GCTM!
love to have articles for publication from GCTM members as well. If
your submission is published, you will receive a year’s membership
free. Let us hear some of your great teaching ideas and your next
annual membership renewal fee is on us. Hope to hear from you soon!
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Past President and
Treasurer – Dan Funsch
– Nickey Ice
Executive Director –
Membership Director –
NCTM Representative –
IT Director –
REFLECTIONS Editor –
VP for Advocacy –
VP for Constitution and
Policy – Patti Barrett
VP for Honors and Awards –
VP for Regional Services
– Valerie Lemon
VP for Competitions –
Conference Board Chair –
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