CURRICULUM FOCAL POINTS: A FRAMEWORK FOR TEACHERS’ PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT PREK - 8

B. Cozza, C. Laboranti, M. Foley

University of Scranton (UNITED STATES)
Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS, 2003, 1995) raised the concern that United States (U.S.) mathematics teachers place less emphasis on topics and teach a variety of content strands. The overall pattern in the U.S. mathematics classrooms today is that primary and upper elementary teachers cover numerous topics before students achieve mastery (National Center for Education Statistics, 1997). To improve this problem, U.S. teachers need to find ways to focus curriculum and study fewer topics with a more in-depth agenda. The Curriculum Focal Points for Pre-kindergarten through Grade 8 Mathematics: A Quest for Coherence (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, 2006) provides a strong framework that may assist teachers in creating a more coherent and focused mathematics program for students. In this paper, the authors discuss example lessons that were implemented and observed in pre-kindergarten, fourth grade and sixth grade classrooms during a year-long professional development program. The overarching goal of this program was to provide appropriate instruction for teachers to organize mathematics standards-based curriculum in geometry, algebra, and measurement, in a coherent, focused curriculum. The authors’ intent is to circulate “best practices” and encourage international connections when using CFP in global classrooms.