Reflecting on NCTM 2014

I’m glad to finally have the opportunity to attend the NCTM conference after 9 years of teaching…and I found it professionally invigorating!  Conference-wise, it was like any other math conference I have attended: there were some hits, many misses, and the cool kids were still the cool kids (like Dan Meyer and them).  But most importantly, I came home with renewed excitement and new ideas about teaching that grew from being surrounded by, simply stated, ‘good people’ in math education.   My most memorable moments were the times before sessions, in-between sessions, and after sessions.   And if any of you were a part of those moments, I am grateful and look forward to sharing ideas and using some of your ideas in the near future.

Things I learned at NCTM:

1) Make MP explicit for the students by incorporating them into your rubric.

2) Engagement in Tasks should include: 1) Launch 2) Investigate 3) Debrief

3) “Smart” has no racial lines.  Create a classroom environment where the students feel like they are a part of a ‘union’ such that they are doing, experiencing, and achieving TOGETHER.

4) Concept Maps …Concept Maps… Concept Maps…  You can have an overarching one, one for the unit, one for the lesson, one for the day…You can never have enough of them!

5) I was right about Synthetic Division… the algorithm is easy to teach, the context is way more challenging.

6) [In regards to] Parenthesis: “Use them”