Shifting to the Core, part 3
With the tighter focus of the CCSSM comes greater depth and increased rigor. You’ll need to offer students many opportunities to develop conceptual understanding, practice key skills, and apply their skills and understandings to novel situations and problems.
To support students in this rigorous approach to mathematics, you’ll need to be comfortable with the mathematics too. We recommend taking the following steps to prepare.
- Identify the mathematical topics addressed in your grade level standards that are most unfamiliar or most challenging for you.
- Take a look at your math curriculum and carefully read the introductions to the units that address these topics.
- Discuss the unit introductions with colleagues, and solve some of the problems that your students will be tackling in those units; try to imagine how students might approach those problems in different ways. Talk about the concepts and skills they’ll need or will develop in the process of solving the problems.
How have you prepared for the increased rigor in the CCSSM? Have you found any books or experiences particularly helpful in boosting your confidence mathematically? How are your students rising to the challenges presented by the CCSSM?
Martha Ruttle is managing editor for MLC.