Serious Fun: Math Practices through Recreational Math
Instructor: Brian Hopkins, St. Peter's College; Editor, College Math Journal
Some math has been developed for applications, some for theory, but some has been developed because it is fun and fascinating. But in several instances such math ended up contributing serious content despite itself.
In this course, we will explore various puzzles and curiosities that address many secondary school mathematics topics in a way that better engages students.
Such extended explorations provide fine opportunities to engage in the Common Core Mathematical Practices:
1. Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
2. Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
3. Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.
4. Model with mathematics.
5. Use appropriate tools strategically.
6. Attend to precision.
7. Look for and make use of structure.
8. Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.
Recreational mathematics has a long history with colorful characters. A primary source will be the the popular columns of Martin Gardner from Scientific American that inspired a few generations of mathematicians, skilled amateurs, and aficionados. We will spend time exploring many topics in recreational mathematics and thinking about how they can be used to help engage students for various topics, but most of all we will have fun being engaged in mathematics ourselves. |
Data and the Common Core: Middle and High School
Instructor: Carol Hattan & NWMI staff
The CCSS expand the role of Statistics and Probability for all students. We will explore activities that can be used to help students understand such concepts as measures of center and spread, variation, sample spaces, random variables, probability distributions, confidence intervals, and fair decisions.
The session will focus on the CCSS Data standards for students in middle grades through Algebra II. |

Algebra and the Common Core: Expressions, Functions and Polynomials
Instructor: Art Mabbott & NWMI staff
The CCSS includes a large number of standards that relate to Algebra in middle school and high school, such as:
- Understand the connections between proportional relationships, lines, and linear equations.
- Analyze and solve linear equations and pairs of simultaneous linear equations.
- Reason quantitatively and use units to solve problems
- Interpret the structure of expressions
- Write expressions in equivalent forms to solve problems
- Construct and compare linear, quadratic, and exponential models and solve problems
- Build a function that models a relationship between two quantities
This course will focus on polynomial expressions and functions, including some non-routine modeling problems that provide experience with some of the Math Practices. |
Algebra Alternative -- *post*
Algebra I: Going Deep into Collection of Evidence
Instructor: Art Mabbott
Washington State offers many alternative routes for students who might not be successful in second year algebra to fulfill the 3rd year requirement. In addition, the state has developed alternatives to the End of Course exams for both Algebra 1 & Geometry - namely the Collection of Evidence. To navigate a student thru these alternative portfolio routes, it would be helpful for teachers to look deeply at the performance tasks that have been developed by OSPI and to look more closely at the performance expectations addressed within each. In this mini course, we will explore each task looking at the expectations addressed and at the mathematics necessary in order to be successful with each task. The participants will spend time completing each task - looking at alternative approaches that might be possible - connecting each task to both the Washington State Standards and to the CCSS, and to the Mathematical Practices. We will also look at both the mathematics necessary to be successful and the challenges that our students will face in being successful. |