The Mathematics Teacher Educator Podcast accompanies the Mathematics Teacher Educator Journal and co-sponsored by the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators and the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics
Episode 31: Learning to Launch Cognitively Demanding Tasks: A Practice-Based Unit for Secondary Methods
June 1st, 2021 | Season 7 | 23 mins 1 sec
cognitively demanding tasks; noticing; pedagogies of practice; practice-based teacher education; secondary methods course; task launch
Cognitively demanding tasks provide important opportunities for students to develop an understanding of mathematics; however, they are challenging to launch and implement. The authors designed a secondary methods unit on launching tasks. Participants in the study were enrolled in five different methods courses. Using a noticing framework, findings suggest that by engaging in the unit, preservice teachers developed a greater understanding of the four aspects of an effective task launch. When viewing video examples, preservice teachers were able to talk about the four aspects of a task launch with increased specificity. Additionally, they began to identify ways of developing common language without reducing cognitive demand. We discuss implications of this work and offer suggestions for future teacher education research.
May 25th, 2021 | Season 7 | 30 mins 11 secs
professional development; pk–12 teachers; argumentation
To support teachers in implementing ambitious reform efforts, professional developers and teacher educators need to know more about teachers’ thinking about argumentation. Specifically, there is a need to understand more about teachers’ views and evaluations of students’ mathematical arguments as they play out in practice. In this article, we share a tool developed to elicit teachers’ pre- and post evaluations of students’ mathematical arguments on a problem-solving task. We discuss the design of the tool and provide evidence of its utility. Our findings indicate that the tool can be used to (a) identify changes in teachers’ evaluations of student mathematical arguments over time and (b) inform the design of professional learning experiences
May 18th, 2021 | Season 7 | 28 mins 32 secs
professional development; grades 3–5
Research has shown that the ways in which teachers engage in professional development activities vary widely. Farmer et al. (2003) identified three levels of teacher appropriation within professional development, with their inquiry stance indicative of teachers engaging in self-sustaining practices. In our project, we modified the demonstration lesson format so that teachers took an active role in changing an observed lesson and then viewing the impact of those changes as a second lesson was taught. We share evidence that this modified structure provided opportunities for teachers to engage in an inquiry stance on teaching and discuss implications for professional development providers in structuring activities to foster an inquiry stance.
Episode 28: Supporting Preservice Secondary Mathematics Teachers’ Professional Judgment Around Digital Technology Use
May 11th, 2021 | Season 7 | 30 mins 12 secs
mathematics methods course; grades 6–12; use appropriate tools strategically; technology
The pervasiveness of digital technology creates an imperative for mathematics teacher educators to prepare preservice teachers (PSTs) to select technology to support students’ mathematical development. We report on research conducted on an assignment created for and implemented in secondary mathematics methods courses
requiring PSTs to select and evaluate digital mathematics tools. We found that PSTs primarily focused on pedagogical fidelity (ease of use), did not consider mathematical fidelity (accuracy), and at times superficially attended to cognitive fidelity (how well the tool reflects students’ mathematical thinking processes) operationalized as the CCSS for Mathematical Practice and Five Strands of Mathematical Proficiency. We discuss implications for implementing the assignment and suggestions for addressing PSTs’ challenges with identifying the mathematical practices and five strands.
Episode 27: Editorial February 2021: Considering Connections Across Research Questions, Data, Methods, and Claims
May 4th, 2021 | Season 7 | 18 mins 23 secs
A key component of a Mathematics Teacher Educator (MTE) journal article is a description of the innovation or tool that was used with teachers and a report of the details of the research on that innovation/tool. In our September editorial we highlighted the innovation. In this editorial, we will focus on the importance of aligning research questions, data, and claims with existing research and theories to present a strong and coherent argument about the contribution the innovation/tool makes to mathematics teacher education.