Advance Look: American Institute for Research Mathematics Professional Development Impact Study
America's Choice created a professional development program designed to enhance the mathematical content knowledge of middle and high school teachers during a course of study commissioned by the US Department of Education. In collaboration with the American Institute for Research the study was piloted in two different school districts. One district's Math curriculum was more traditional (Glencoe) in its approach and the other was more non-tradional (CMP). The program involved a 3 day summer institute and a 5 day "during the year" seminar for all seventh grade math teachers in both districts. This professional development focused on rational number (fractions, decimals, ratios and percents) and includes activities and problems that are designed to provide a content foundation for new teachers and to stretch the learning for veteran Math teachers. The trainers also serve as in classroom coaches and peers complete observations designed to provide feedback on what the students are doing. The study is in its first year of full implementation in six counties across the nation. Data is being collected throughout this year on how this type of enhancement of teacher knowledge effects the performance of students.
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