N.C. district shares best practices for going digital | Minn. math teachers create videos to help students get ready for third grade | Survey considers schools' progress on the common core
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July 29, 2013
NCTM SmartBrief
Mathematics Education in Today's News

Teaching & LearningSponsored By
Camp seeks to engage young mathematicians
Students taking part in the summer camp program, MathPath, complete daily homework and interact with top mathematicians. The traveling program is being held at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn., where students are engaged in discussions and activities about advanced math concepts, such as cryptology and projective geometry. "There's a whole lot of math you don't learn in the schools that these camps will teach you," student Catherine Phillips said. Pioneer Press (St. Paul, Minn.) (7/28)
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N.C. district shares best practices for going digital
Mooresville, N.C., schools -- considered a national model for digital learning -- recently held its fourth annual Summer Connection conference, which drew educators nationwide to the district to learn more about using digital technology in classroom lessons. During the conference, Richard Culatta, director of the Office of Educational Technology for the U.S. Department of Education, noted that October has been declared Connected Educator month and said, "We have to pour gasoline on the flame of teacher collaboration online to make sure we're taking advantage of all these great technologies." The Charlotte Observer (N.C.) (7/26), Education Week/Marketplace K-12 blog (7/25)
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When joy is at the heart of teaching, learning is memorable.
Start with Joy by Katie Egan Cunningham links what we know from the science of happiness with effective literacy instruction. By infusing school days with joy, teachers can support children become stronger readers, writers, and thinkers. Read today!
Minn. math teachers create videos to help students get ready for third grade
To help prepare students for their third-grade math curriculum, a group of Minnesota second-grade teachers have produced some funny and educational videos, and posted them online at almostathirdgrader.com for their students and for kids around the world to see. Basic algebra concepts are taught with the help of a teacher's dog chasing tennis balls, and the site also has links to worksheets and poll questions, such as, "Where is your favorite place to work on math?" Star Tribune (Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.) (7/27)
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Survey considers schools' progress on the common core
As school districts nationwide prepare for the Common Core State Standards, 53% of those who responded to a recent SmartBrief on EdTech survey said their schools or districts have the technology in place -- or expect to -- in order to implement the standards. The survey also gauged how districts are getting out information about the common core, with 55.88% reporting that websites are the primary means of communication. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Education (7/26)
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Other News
NYC students spend their summer learning computer coding
Through a project known as GenTech, students in the New York City area are in the classroom this summer developing their computer-coding skills, which GenTech organizers and participants see as a means to building marketable skills that can lead to solid careers in the field or as entrepreneurs. "We are teaching students how to code which we see as the literacy of the 21st century," program director Jordan Runge said, adding, "How can you be successful not having this? You become so much more marketable as a professional if you know how to code." NY1 (New York City) (7/25)
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Other News
Policy & Legislation
Are students taking specialized curricula more likely to go to college?
Students in Milwaukee Public Schools who enrolled in specialized curricula, such as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate, were more likely to enroll in college than their peers who did not, according to a report released Thursday. Officials say results of the study, by the Public Policy Forum, also show that typical achievement gaps tied to students' socioeconomic status also appear to narrow among students enrolled in such specialized programs. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (tiered subscription model) (7/25)
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Preventing summer learning loss
The rules for NCTM's Illuminations' applet Primary Krypto (pre-K-8) are simple: Combine five number cards using the four arithmetic operations to arrive at a target number. If you're an educator, then you'll appreciate an accompanying lesson plan that you can keep for the next school year. This game will keep students learning and practicing basic math skills throughout the summer break!
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Legislative Update
The Department of Education and the Corporation for National and Community Service recently announced the 13 grant recipients participating in the new School Turnaround AmeriCorps program, an effort aiming to improve persistently underachieving schools in the nation. Read about these and more in the Legislative Update.
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Formula for success: rise early, work hard, strike oil."
-- J. Paul Getty,
American industrialist
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