Tuesday, October 8, 2013
The importance of accountability. Teachers are held accountable through standardized test scores, but student attitudes and their families need to also be considered. Many students are in the wrong math class because they are being forced through the system. Students should not be required to take “college prep” math courses when what they need is the practical mathematics relevant to their life. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) would like to see students graduate with a working knowledge of the essential mathematics that they will need to function successively as adults rather than these students graduate with a poor understanding of college math. There is an emphasis on relevance; applying what you are learning to real situations and events. Representation, as articulated in Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, describes how the understanding of mathematics is advanced when concepts are explored in a variety of forms including symbols, graphs, tables, and physical models, as well as spoken and written words. Students’ representations shed light on their thought process, and how they organized and approached the problem.