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Rob Schupbach
CRIN E07: Elementary Math Curriculum and Instruction
Dr. Margie Mason/Ms. Rachael Cofer
November 17, 2011

                                15th Annual Mathematics Day
                           Teaching Mathematics in the 21st Century
                                      November 10, 2011

       Attending the 15th Annual Mathematics Day at the College of William and Mary was a

highlight to the grueling semester. Although I was feeling quite ill (I passed a kidney stone later

that evening!) the day was filled with helpful tools as I begin to navigate what I anticipate will be

a very rough math class during my student teaching.

       Sadly, due to logistical reasons, I was unable to attend most of the day. However, I was

able to the whole day. It was quite a struggle just to get to the conference. A faction of us really

wanted to go (mainly Dr. Mason’s section). However, the other section did not want to go, and

actually one student described it as, “a waste of time.” That was not my sections sentiments. We

wanted to expand on the knowledge that we were learning in class. We were taking copious

notes, and then realized that all of the information would be up on the Tide Water website. We

sat back, and let the information wash over us.

       As my cohort colleagues gathered together, we watched as are future, veteran colleagues

engaged in the keynote speech of Dr. Francis “Skip” Fennell from McDaniel College. Some of

the statistics that Dr. Fennell presented were mind boggling! The fact that only a small portion of

17 year-olds can identify the denominator and numerator in a fraction is very disheartening. How

could this basic knowledge slip through the cracks? I was quite taken with the LiveScribe pen

and software in which Dr. Fennell had used with a student (his granddaughter). It seems to be a

great resource for teachers to go back and do an error analysis. I was also quite glad that Dr.

Fennell introduced the Danica McKellar’s books on mathematics. Of course, being older than the

rest of my cohort colleagues, I remember her as “Whinny Cooper” from The Wonder Years.
Rob Schupbach
CRIN E07: Elementary Math Curriculum and Instruction
Dr. Margie Mason/Ms. Rachael Cofer
November 17, 2011

However, she went on to get a degree in mathematics and has written books on getting kids,

especially girls, into math. I was also happy that Dr. Fennell touched upon the Common Core.

Even though that seems to be dirty words in Virginia, it is nice to see it being broached in

mathematics education. Math methods class is the only class in which we examined the Common

Core against the Virginia SOLs.

       I attended Judith Post, Robin Blake, and Stacy Newell’s session entitled “What’s Your

Angle” during the first session. The session was presented as such: Participants will work to

create an “angle measuring” device. We will us the book Sir Cumference and the Great King of

Angleland as a backdrop for the activity. First, I appreciated the infusion of children’s literature

into the mathematics class. I think that is what drew me to this session. The leaders of the session

introduced us to STEM education. I appreciated their candor about how STEM education often

has misinterpretations and multiple meanings. In this session, we created our own device (a

protractor) to measure 45°, 90°, 135°, 180°. Fellow cohort member and friend, Courtney Mann

and I worked together. The instructors had a variety of materials. While looking at the materials,

I realized that we could use a long cardboard tube with a piece of yarn coming out of the center.

It really was a nice project. The group leaders wanted to keep our finished project, and Courtney

and I were happy that we could use both our creativity and mathematics knowledge to create

something useful.

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15th annual mathematics day

  • 1. Rob Schupbach CRIN E07: Elementary Math Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Margie Mason/Ms. Rachael Cofer November 17, 2011 15th Annual Mathematics Day Teaching Mathematics in the 21st Century November 10, 2011 Attending the 15th Annual Mathematics Day at the College of William and Mary was a highlight to the grueling semester. Although I was feeling quite ill (I passed a kidney stone later that evening!) the day was filled with helpful tools as I begin to navigate what I anticipate will be a very rough math class during my student teaching. Sadly, due to logistical reasons, I was unable to attend most of the day. However, I was able to the whole day. It was quite a struggle just to get to the conference. A faction of us really wanted to go (mainly Dr. Mason’s section). However, the other section did not want to go, and actually one student described it as, “a waste of time.” That was not my sections sentiments. We wanted to expand on the knowledge that we were learning in class. We were taking copious notes, and then realized that all of the information would be up on the Tide Water website. We sat back, and let the information wash over us. As my cohort colleagues gathered together, we watched as are future, veteran colleagues engaged in the keynote speech of Dr. Francis “Skip” Fennell from McDaniel College. Some of the statistics that Dr. Fennell presented were mind boggling! The fact that only a small portion of 17 year-olds can identify the denominator and numerator in a fraction is very disheartening. How could this basic knowledge slip through the cracks? I was quite taken with the LiveScribe pen and software in which Dr. Fennell had used with a student (his granddaughter). It seems to be a great resource for teachers to go back and do an error analysis. I was also quite glad that Dr. Fennell introduced the Danica McKellar’s books on mathematics. Of course, being older than the rest of my cohort colleagues, I remember her as “Whinny Cooper” from The Wonder Years.
  • 2. Rob Schupbach CRIN E07: Elementary Math Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Margie Mason/Ms. Rachael Cofer November 17, 2011 However, she went on to get a degree in mathematics and has written books on getting kids, especially girls, into math. I was also happy that Dr. Fennell touched upon the Common Core. Even though that seems to be dirty words in Virginia, it is nice to see it being broached in mathematics education. Math methods class is the only class in which we examined the Common Core against the Virginia SOLs. I attended Judith Post, Robin Blake, and Stacy Newell’s session entitled “What’s Your Angle” during the first session. The session was presented as such: Participants will work to create an “angle measuring” device. We will us the book Sir Cumference and the Great King of Angleland as a backdrop for the activity. First, I appreciated the infusion of children’s literature into the mathematics class. I think that is what drew me to this session. The leaders of the session introduced us to STEM education. I appreciated their candor about how STEM education often has misinterpretations and multiple meanings. In this session, we created our own device (a protractor) to measure 45°, 90°, 135°, 180°. Fellow cohort member and friend, Courtney Mann and I worked together. The instructors had a variety of materials. While looking at the materials, I realized that we could use a long cardboard tube with a piece of yarn coming out of the center. It really was a nice project. The group leaders wanted to keep our finished project, and Courtney and I were happy that we could use both our creativity and mathematics knowledge to create something useful.