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Mi2 Update: February 2017
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In This Newsletter:

Alt+Shift Newsletter | Foundations of Math | Enhancing Mathematics Instruction for Students With Learning Difficulties: Implementation Story | Delta Math | Math Anxiety | Math Around Michigan | (Mi)2 Resources | Upcoming (Mi)2 Dates | (Mi)2 Partners | Subscription Details
Alt+Shift Newsletter

(Mi)2 is part of Alt+Shift, an Individuals with Disabilities Education Act grant-funded initiative out of the Michigan Department of Education, Office of Special Education. With a focus on collaboration and impact, Alt+Shift provides professional learning opportunities, technical assistance, and implementation support for practices that help educators rethink possibilities and realize potential for every student, including those with disabilities, particularly related to assistive technology and augmentative and alternative communication.

Educators who work with students with disabilities will find information about upcoming events in Michigan and across the United States, resources that support their work with students who struggle, and educator highlights that showcase promising practices.

Subscribe to the Alt+Shift newsletter today!

Foundations of Math

The Day 5 make-up day for the fall Foundations of Math series is February 9, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., at Eaton Regional Education Service Agency (RESA), 1790 Packard Hwy., Charlotte, MI, 48813. Please email Kate Fanelli with any questions.

Enhancing Mathematics Instruction for Students With Learning Difficulties: Implementation Story

Educator: Angela Milanov
District: Troy School District
Students: Middle School
(Mi)2 Cohort: Birmingham

In my co-taught 7th grade math class I have 30 students, 14 of whom have individualized education programs (IEPs). Implementing the IEPs and providing direct and individualized instruction is a daily challenge. Enhancing Math presents six “areas” or aspects of math learning that could present, when absent, barriers to learning. One common barrier for my students is getting started when presented with a math problem.

On a day when the lesson was to use cross multiplication to solve a proportion, I knew that one student in particular would have trouble getting started on the problem. The student has an IEP with goals for math calculation and problem solving. He completes his math work but rarely participates in class unless he is called upon. He also struggles with reading comprehension. Although there could be several barriers to learning, I knew that getting started was the most immediate. If he could not engage with the problem, he certainly would not be able to solve it.

The problem was, “You have ten boxes of pizza you want to buy. All you know is that three pizzas cost $17.25. How much will ten pizzas cost?” Again, the lesson was structured to have the student use cross multiplication to solve, but the real math content was using proportional thinking to solve for an unknown value.

I decided to try a prompting strategy that encouraged the student to think about the approach, but not provide any direct instruction.

I presented the problem, and the student asked, “What do I do?”

I responded, “What do you know?”

The student read the problem back to me.

I asked, “So what can you figure out from that?”

And then he started. He used estimation and mental division to figure out the approximate price for each pizza, he used number sense and multiplication to refine that amount to the exact price, and then he used knowledge of the unit rate to figure out the total cost for ten pizzas—all without any direct instruction from me. I only provided prompts such as, “What does that mean? Talk out what you’re doing,” and acknowledgement of what he had done by saying, “See you can figure it out without me showing you. You just have to break it apart.”

In Enhancing Math training we look at potential barriers to student learning.

If I hadn’t had him talk the problem out, think it through himself, and provide prompts, he would never have tried the problem due to a lack of confidence, even though he had the mathematical ability. Many times as teachers we misdiagnose the problem when we do not consider all of the barriers, which means getting inside students’ minds to see what they are thinking. We need to stop, make the time, and see what they do know!

Delta Math

The spring screening cycle begins next month on March 1. Delta Math began providing general recommendations for Tier 2 support based on the evidence-based recommendations provided in the IES Practice Guide, Assisting Students Struggling With Mathematics: Response to Intervention (RtI) for Elementary and Middle Schools, 2009.

Over the past four years, (Mi)2 has supported the collaboration of math consultants, administrators, math coaches, and teachers that have resulted in more detailed recommendations. Each year, patterns of successful implementation are identified and new recommendations are added to the Delta Math Implementation Guide and shared with all participating schools.

The newest Delta Math recommendation supports Tier 1 instruction by “screening up” students in February. Standard-based data that can be collected within 15 to 25 minutes and can be used to guide M-STEP review.

If you have questions about Delta Math recommendations or would like to schedule an information or implementation training session in your region, please email Mike Klavon.

Math Anxiety

In his blog entry, Exit 10A: Trying to make math meaningful in an elementary school somewhere off the New Jersey Turnpike, Joe Schwartz tells the story of helping his daughter find her first summer job. Her stubborn, almost panicked refusal to apply at many places with “Help Wanted” posted in their windows is the story of how math anxiety can go unnoticed and unchecked, and can have profound effects on those who experience it. Among the lessons Schwartz learned is that “math anxiety is real, that it interferes with performance, and that bad things happen when we put undue pressure and time constraints on kids.”

Math Around Michigan

The Surprising Importance of Early Math
Young children have a surprising capacity to learn substantial mathematics, but most children in the U.S. have a discouraging lack of opportunities to do so. Too many children have fewer opportunities to learn. The good news is that programs and curricula—especially those based on learning trajectories designed to facilitate mathematical learning from the earlier years through elementary school—have a strong positive effect on these children’s lives for many years. Starting early with high-quality mathematics education creates an opportunity for substantial mathematical learning in the primary years that builds on these foundational competencies.

Doug Clements from the University of Denver will present two sessions on the importance of early math teaching in February:

Event: The Surprising Importance of Early Math
Date: February 17, 2017
Times: 8:30 a.m. (Pre-K–K); 12:30 p.m. (Grades 1–3)
Location: North Central Michigan College Library Conference Center, Petoskey

During the sessions, participants will be able to:
  • Describe what young children know and can learn about math

  • List gaps that threaten some children’s success

  • Describe what research suggests is core math experience

  • List several ways to connect math to children’s informal thinking and play

  • Informally define learning trajectories and the role they should play in early education
For more information, including cost and registration, download the Surprising Importance of Early Math flyer. Registration closes February 10.

Call for Proposals: Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM) Annual Conference
The 68th annual MCTM Conference will be held July 25-27 at Traverse City Central High School. MCTM is looking for speakers to share their expertise with colleagues on a variety of topics, including:
  • Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM)/Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics (STEAM)

  • Formative assessment

  • Meeting the needs of accelerated/advanced students

  • Meeting the needs of struggling students

  • Integrating technology/robotics/computer science

  • Coaches/consultants

  • Other
Educators answering yes to any of the following questions should submit a proposal to speak at this year’s conference:
  • Do you have strategies that help incorporate other academic disciplines into the math curriculum?

  • Do you have expertise on how to create and implement an integrated, multidiscipline curriculum?

  • Do you bring relevant, real-world applications into the classroom?

  • Do you incorporate technology into your classroom in a way that expands students understanding of mathematics?

  • Do you have ways to leverage technology that help improve both your students’ skills and your understanding of your students’ gaps?
Proposals are accepted through February 2017. Submit a proposal via the online MCTM Conference speaker proposal form. Lead presenters receive a complimentary conference registration. This year, the conference will include keynote addresses by Margaret Heritage on Formative Assessment and Jason Zima, a lead writer of the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics.

Michigan Council for Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM) Book Club
The 16th MCTM online book club will be starting in late January or early February.

The book club will study Visible Learning for Mathematics: Grades K–12 by John Hattie, Douglas Fisher, Nancy Frey, Linda Gojak, Sara Delano Moore, and William Mellman. It is available at There is no cost to join the book club other than the cost of the book.

Each week, the book club will read and discuss one of the chapters. Questions will be added to a Google Doc and emailed at the beginning of the week. Members will have the week to read, reflect, and respond.

If you would like to join or have additional questions, please email Kevin Dykema.

Michigan Council for Exceptional Children (MCEC) Annual Conference
The Michigan CEC is celebrating its 77th annual conference by presenting national speakers, over 120 breakout sessions, 30+ exhibitors, and unique networking opportunities. The goal is for each participant to have a productive learning experience and an opportunity to share with colleagues from across the state through quality, research-based sessions, enjoyable receptions, and productive organizational meetings.

Event: MCEC Annual Conference
Dates: March 1–3, 2017
Location: Amway Grand Plaza Hotel, Grand Rapids

Visit the MCEC conference page to register online and to see a complete list of sessions.

Sessions focused on math include:
  • Using Manipulatives to Develop Number and Operations, presented by Kevin Dykema

  • Making Student Thinking Visible With Students Who Take Alternate Assessments in Mathematics, presented by Jim Randall

  • The Power of Collaboration, presented by Vicki Lynn Holmes

  • Foundations of Math for Students With Significant Disabilities, presented by Kate Fanelli

  • Blended Co-taught Math Classroom, presented by Elena Girolamo

  • Low Incidence: High School Math Essential Elements, presented by Carrie Schade
Michigan Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators (MI-AMTE) 2017 Conference
The 2017 MI-AMTE Conversations among Colleagues conference focuses on how to develop coherent educational systems utilizing the full range of experts available in K–16 education within the state of Michigan. The organizational structure of the one-day conference is designed as a working conference among an even broader audience in sharing ideas about improving teaching and learning mathematics. The conference includes invited plenary sessions, participant working groups, and solicited talks related to the conference theme. The expected outcomes of the conference include building a shareable knowledge base; future collaborations with a variety of key stakeholders; and an action, plan, and/or advocacy recommendations for mathematics and mathematics education.

The 2017 conference is on March 18 and will be hosted by Michigan State University.

Early registration prices are available through January 31. For more information, and to register, visit the MI-AMTE conference page.

Get Set for SET: Engaging in the Statistical Education of Teachers
The American Statistical Association (ASA) and the Statistics Education Special Interest Group (SIG) of MI-AMTE are offering a FREE one-day professional development workshop for mathematics educators involved in the statistical training of teachers. This workshop will attend to the necessity of preparing mathematics teacher educators to work with K–12 teachers who teach statistics. This includes those who teach content and methods courses for pre-service teachers as well as those who lead professional development for in-service teachers.

The workshop will be led by an expert team of statisticians and statistics teacher educators, including Christine Franklin of the ASA and Statistics Education SIG leaders Stephanie Casey, Christine Browning, Jon Hasenbank, and Darlene Kohrman.

Event: Get Set for SET: Engaging in the Statistical Education of Teachers
Date: March 17, 2017 (Note: this is the day before the MI-AMTE conference at the same site.)
Time: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Location: C-405 Wells Hall, Michigan State University, East Lansing
Who can attend: Persons involved in the statistical education of teachers

For more information, download the Get Set for SET flyer. Register via the Get Set for SET Google Form.

Math in Action Conference
Math in Action: Making Math Meaningful will be held February 25, 2017, at Grand Valley State University’s Allendale Campus.

Math in Action presents lively and informative discussions of current issues in mathematics education while providing an opportunity for practicing pre-K–12 teachers, prospective teachers, curriculum directors, and college and university faculty to share ideas, concerns, and resources. State Continuing Education Clock Hours (SCECHs) are available for most sessions. The conference consists of six hour-long sessions with approximately eight separate interactive presentations during each session. Presentations are focused on specific mathematics topics at a variety of grade levels. Visit the Math in Action conference page for more information.

Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST)
Do you know or are you an exemplary math or science teacher in 7th through 12th grade? Please consider nominating him or her for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST). The PAEMST is the highest recognition a K–12 teacher can receive for outstanding science or mathematics teaching in the United States.

For more information, download the PAEMST flyer. Deadline for applications is May 1, 2017.

AP® Computer Science Principles (CSP) Professional Learning Series
The Michigan Math and Science Center Network is offering the AP® CSP Professional Learning Series this summer for schools offering AP® Computer Science next fall. Interested schools will submit an application to attend the five-day conference-style workshop designed to introduce the computer science concepts from the curriculum, AP® elements of the course, and core teaching practices. The series runs from July 31 to August 4, 2017. For more information, including the application for participation, visit the CSP Professional Learning Series website.

2016–2017 Jackson Intermediate School District (ISD) Math Offerings
Jackson ISD has a variety of math offerings this spring. For additional information, click the links below. Email Heather Holshoe with any questions.

Math K–6 Single Day Offerings: 2016–2017 Kalamazoo Regional Educational Services Agency (KRESA) Math Offerings
Kalamazoo RESA has released their list of math offerings for the upcoming school year. Visit the KRESA mathematics page for additional information and registration. Course offerings include:
  • Cultivating Confident Math Learners: Supporting a Growth Mindset

  • Cultivating Flexible Thinkers Through Number Talks: Number Sense Routines for Grades 4–9

  • Cultivating Flexible Thinkers: Teaching Addition and Subtraction Through Number Sense and Visual Representation

  • Cultivating Flexible Thinkers: Teaching Fractions Through Number Sense and Visual Representation

  • Cultivating Resilient Problem Solvers (Secondary)

  • Cultivating Resilient Problem Solvers (Upper Elementary)

  • Delta Math Implementation Training

  • Exploring the Power of Visual Representations Across Secondary Math

  • Teaching With Eureka Math for the First Time

(Mi)2 Resources

  1. Website: Michigan's Integrated Mathematics Initiative

  2. Monthly e-newsletter: Subscribe to the (Mi)2 Update

  3. Technical Assistance: Contact (Mi)2

  4. Follow (Mi)2 on Twitter and find (Mi)2 on Facebook

Upcoming (Mi)2 Dates

February 23 and 24 – Teaching Mathematics to Students With Significant Disabilities
Breakout Session
Upper Peninsula Special Education Conference

March 2 – Teaching Mathematics to Students With Significant Disabilities
Breakout Session
Michigan Council for Exceptional Children Conference
Grand Rapids

June 20-22 – Alt+Shift Summer Institute
Traverse City

June 21-22 – Foundations of Math: Teaching Students With Significant Disabilities
Two-Day Preview
Alt+Shift Summer Institute
Traverse City

August 7-8 – Foundations of Math
Days 1 and 2
St. Johns

August 9-10 – Foundations of Math: Teaching Students With Significant Disabilities
Days 1 and 2
St. Johns

October 16 – Foundations of Math
Day 3
St. Johns

October 17-18 – Foundations of Math: Teaching Students With Significant Disabilities
Days 3 and 4
St. Johns

November 8-9 – Foundations of Math
Days 4-5
St. Johns

November 10 – Foundations of Math: Teaching Students With Significant Disabilities
Day 5
St. Johns

(Mi)2 Partners

Michigan Math and Science Center Network (MMSCN)

The Michigan Mathematics and Science Centers Network (MMSCN) collaborates with partners across the state to improve math and science teaching.

Detroit Area Council of Teachers of Mathematics (DACTM)

The Detroit Area Council of Teachers of Mathematics (DACTM) proactively supports Michigan math educators’ continued professional growth.

Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM)

The Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM) is the professional organization for Michigan mathematics educators at any grade level, pre-K through college.

Michigan Council for Exceptional Children (MCEC)

The Michigan Council for Exceptional Children (MCEC) is part of a national community of educators who are the voice and vision of special and gifted education.

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Alt+Shift, encompassing Michigan’s Integrated Mathematics Initiative, is an Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Grant Funded Initiative through the Michigan Department of Education, Office of Special Education.

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