Support for Local Project to Strengthen Mathematics Teaching

The California Mathematics Council is a statewide organization dedicated to enhancing the learning and teaching of mathematics to all students. Most California readers of AIMS blogs are likely familiar with the work of this organization, but may be unaware that it has local expressions. These local entities are known as “affiliates” within the organization itself. There are 26 of these affiliate organizations across the state already. Although five of these are part of the Central Section, there are however, none listed in the Fresno/Madera County areas.

We at the AIMS Center thought this was a wrong that needed righting. So we pulled together teachers, district personnel, county office mathematics coordinators, and others interested in creating a network here in our area. On Thursday May 11, 2017 we met and created the Fresno and Madera Mathematics Educators (FaM2E). We gathered at a pizza parlor in Fresno, but before making plans for what we should do as an organization, we took the time to build Soma cube puzzles together and investigated some of the properties of these classic wooden block puzzles.

Once we got down to business though, a very serious meeting of 18 of the most passionate mathematics teachers you will ever know ensued. Wherein we discussed our purpose and the need for officers. It was decided to create four offices, each serving two year terms. These offices are President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. With a whole lot of laughter and general good fun we nominated and elected three of the four officers on the spot. They are:

President: Harlan Elrich from Sanger Unified

Vice President: Nancy Ferraro from Madera Unified

Treasurer: Yet to be decided

Secretary: Yours Truly, Chris Brownell

Our purpose statement is still being crafted but will encompass the following ideas:

  • Constructing and strengthening professional networks of mathematics teachers in the two counties;
  • Seeking to promote the joy of learning and doing mathematics in all classrooms in the region, and to do this through creating opportunities for professional growth;
  • Keeping a focus on achieving equity of opportunity and engagement for all students of mathematics at every level.

I look forward to working with all these folks to see mathematics education continue to improve its scope and reach throughout our region.

Coming soon, a local chapter of the California Science Teachers Association (CSTA) as well. Stay tuned!

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