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When the Stars Align

Yesterday, it was as though the stars aligned and things I have been working on for over twenty years converged and crystallized in my mind. Years ago when my children were young, I was the public speaking leader for their

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Sense Making

One of the reasons I am so passionate about basic math understanding is a beautiful 24 year old girl named Cameron.  She was a wonderful student, but in her final years of high school she struggled with math.  In a

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Deep Not Wide

For years, teachers have bemoaned the fact that they were forced to teach a mile wide and an inch deep.  The new Common Core State Standards for Mathematics are designed to reduce the number of concepts that will be taught

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New…and Improved? Assessments

When it comes to discussions of the common core, the conversation quickly turns to the question uppermost in teachers’ minds,  “What will the new state assessment look like?”   The truth of the matter is, we aren’t sure yet. Initially, the

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A Whole New Look

or teachers who are proficient at navigating their current state standards, the Common Core Standards may have a completely different look.  In the area of mathematics, the content of the document is divided into domains, clusters, and standards. Domains are

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When Five Plus Five Equals Eight

For the last several months, I have been privileged to work with hundreds of teachers as they unpack the Common Core State Standards. In each session, which have been held in grade level groups, we have worked through the meanings

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Persistent Problem Solving

A question I have been asked frequently is, “What should the common core look like in practice?”  In my opinion there is no one right answer to that question.  However, the common core’s eight standards for mathematical practice suggests that

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All For One and One For All

Seven entities with vested interest in the area of mathematics and common core state standards have agreed to lend their collective expertise to the formation of a new coalition called MC3.  The organizations include the National Council of Teachers of

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Good Advice From the Top

I just read a blog post by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics President, J. Michael Shaughness, about the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. In his post, CCSSM and Curriculum and Assessment: NOT Business as Usual, Shaughness shares

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Tidbits from NCSM

Last week I attended a meeting of the Kansas State Mathematics Leaders.  A good portion of our day was spent discussing the common core state standards and what is known about the future mathematics assessment.  Several of the members had

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