**MATH
5035/7035**

**Arithmetic
for Middle Grades Teachers**

**University
of Georgia**

**Fall
2011**

Mondays,
Wednesdays, and Fridays, 11:15 – 12:05 am in room 304 Boyd Graduate
Studies.

**Instructor**:

Dr. Sybilla Beckmann, Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professor of Mathematics

501
Boyd Graduate Studies Building

706-542-2548

email: sybilla@math.uga.edu

or: Click here to send email to Sybilla Beckmann

Please
contact me as soon as possible (by email or phone) if an illness or emergency
prevents you from attending class.

**Sybilla
BeckmannÕs office hours**:
Mondays and Fridays 12:15 – 1:15 in room 501 Boyd Graduate Studies. You
are always welcome to make an appointment to see me at other times or to e-mail
me or call me with questions.

**Writing
Intensive Program (WIP) Teaching Assitant**:

Maren Turbow

438
Boyd Graduate Studies Building

706-542-2593

email: mturbow@math.uga.edu

or: Click here to send email to Maren Turbow

**Maren**** TurbowÕs office hours**: Are now by appointment. Please email
Maren, mturbow@uga.edu, to schedule an appointment.
Her office is 438 Boyd Graduate
Studies.

**Mathematics
Education Teaching Assistant**:

Email: eunkyung.kang@gmail.com

Or: Click
here to send email to Eun Kang

**Assignments,
test schedules, and announcements**

**This course is part of your preparation to teach
math** in
grades 4 through 8. Teachers are so important! We know that teacher quality is
a major factor in student achievement. We want to guide you along a path toward
becoming a good math teacher. As a good math teacher you will select
mathematically worthwhile tasks and problems, you will ask questions, listen to
your studentsÕ mathematical ideas, orchestrate discussions, and expect students
to reason about and make sense of math. To do so, you must develop a strong and
flexible understanding of the concepts you will teach. Therefore we will go
deeply into the ideas about numbers and operations that students learn in
grades 4 – 8.

The course
content is closely linked to the Common Core
State Standards for Mathematics, which Georgia has adopted for its K-12
curriculum (to replace the current Georgia Performance Standards over the next
few years). These standards consist of **Standards
for Mathematical Content** and **Standards
for Mathematical Practice**. When you teach, you will be responsible for
helping your students develop habits of mind of mathematical thinkers through
engaging in the mathematical practices.

As a teacher,
your own attitudes about math and about learning are important. Therefore, in
this course we aim to foster the following dispositions, practices, and
understandings:

**A
Ògrowth mindsetÓ**
– Intelligence is not fixed but is something that can be improved by
working at it. Ò[A] proven
intervention is to tell junior-high-school students that I.Q. is expandable,
and that their intelligence is something they can help shape. Students exposed
to that idea work harder and get better grades. ThatÕs particularly true of
girls and math, apparently because some girls assume that they are genetically
disadvantaged at numbers; deprived of an excuse for failure, they excel.Ó
(From the NY Times 4/16/2009 article *How to Raise our I.Q*. by Nicholas Kristof. ) And: ÒPeople who believe in the power of talent tend not to
fulfill their potential because theyÕre so concerned with looking smart and not
making mistakes. But people who believe that talent can be developed are the
ones who really push, stretch, confront their own mistakes and learn from
them.Ó (Dr. Carol Dweck, as quoted in the NY
Times 7/6/2008, If YouÕre
Open to Growth You Tend to Grow)

**Engagement** – People learn
through active engagement with ideas and by building the ideas in their own
minds. In class, you will often be asked to solve and discuss problems and to
think about mathematical ideas in new or different ways. Make productive and
active use of that time. This includes allowing yourself time to think and
grapple, even when you are stuck or struggling. Throughout the course, try to
think critically about ideas and work towards expressing ideas with greater
precision. Look for interesting connections to other ideas and look for things
that are surprising or neat.

**Perseverance** – Keep trying to understand an
idea or solve a problem even when you donÕt Òget itÓ right away. Persistence and
commitment to continued learning are vital to success in the long run, much
more so than being talented or Òquick.Ó

**Responsibility** – Take
responsibility for your learning. Monitor your understanding and look for ways
to extend and improve it. Seek help when you need it. Look for your own optimal
level of challenge.

**Learning
community**
– Learn with and from your classmates. Listen carefully to their ideas,
explanations, and problem-solving approaches. Think critically about what you
hear. Listening to others can be difficult and confusing at times, but itÕs an
especially important skill for teachers. As a teacher you will need to listen
closely to your students to determine how they are thinking about mathematical
ideas so that you can build on what your students know. Recognize that in class
we are working together to make sense of ideas, which will involve some false
starts and errors. Incorrect answers are valuable opportunities to determine
where the flaws lie. Be comfortable agreeing or disagreeing (you may feel more
comfortable saying you Òrespectfully disagreeÓ). Support each otherÕs learning.
Nudge each other towards greater participation and engagement.

**Mathematical
ideas**
– Understand that lines of reasoning, explanations, and making sense of
concepts and ideas are just as important in math as skills and procedures. At
its core, math is about ideas.

**Additional information about and policies of this
section of MATH 5035/7035**