Archive for ALGEBRAIC THINKING

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2016

IMPACT Math

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IMPACT
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About Project IMPACT:

The purpose of Project IMPACT, Improving Mathematical Practices via Algebraic Connections and Technology in Elementary and Middle School Mathematics, is to create a collaborative network for knowledge development in mathematics teaching and learning. It provides a forum for teachers to collaboratively plan lessons, exchange best instructional practices and effective uses of tech-knowledgy tools to design instructional tasks that promote algebraic conceptual thinking. Teacher collaboration enhances their professional practice which then affects students’ learning. This project is led by Dr. Jennifer Suh and Dr. Padhu Seshaiyer at George Mason University through grants funded by the State Council of Higher Education in Virginia.

Why algebra as the focus?

Algebra has typically been considered a high school course and often called the gateway course to graduation. However, algebra is no longer a middle and high school course, but a prominent strand in the k-8 curriculum. In fact, according to the MATH Now initiative, aimed at advancing math education in elementary and middle school, the Secretary of Education, Margret Spellings stated,

“To compete in the global economy, you must know math. Therefore it is more important than ever that our students receive solid math instruction in the early grades to prepare them to take and pass Algebra and other challenging courses in middle school and high school.”

By introducing algebraic reasoning as a study of patterns, functions and relationships, students gain access to algebraic investigations early in the elementary grades, which can demystify algebra and build foundational building blocks for more formalized study of algebra in middle and high school. Research has shown greatest impact of technology on algebra activity with middle and secondary level students in understanding and visualizing graphical representations of symbolic forms through the use of graphing calculators, computer algebra systems and other software programs (Kieren, 2007).

Working with preservice and inservice teachers, this collaborative network will build on the knowledge necessary for teaching.

Situated in practice based dilemma, teachers collaboratively design instruction that promote students’ mathematical proficiency.

Website by Dr. Jennifer Suh
Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education
email: jsuh4@gmu.edu
link to Dr. Suh’s website: http://mason.gmu.edu/~jsuh4

Mentoring Network for IMPACT in Mathematics Teaching and Learning