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New learning standards for math emphasize the importance of developing students’ abilities to reason and articulate reasoning across a variety of topics in math. Starting October 3, Jeff Zwiers, Phil Daro, and Shelbi Cole will offer a free online professional development course, Integrating Language Development and Content Learning in Math: Focus on Reasoning, to help teachers improve their design and development of learning activities that foster mathematical reasoning and its language.
The sessions will zoom in on different language modes and how they can foster students’ abilities to reason and describe their reasoning. Sessions focus on listening, speaking, whole class conversations, small group and pair conversations, reading, and writing. We provide a design tool and plenty of practice using it in order to strengthen the language development potential of a wide range of math teaching activities. The course also includes instructional activities and routines to be used across lessons and units to meet the linguistic and cultural needs of English learners and other students who struggle with the language demands of learning math.
This course consists of seven online sessions, with three weeks or so between each session. Each session includes expert video screencasts, reflection prompts, classroom video clips, readings, resources, and assignments that will prompt participants to use what they learn in their classrooms and reflect on student language use. Participants are free to complete the session tasks at their own pace as long as they finish them within the allotted time.