MATH CONVERSATION EVALUATIONS November 29, 2005 1. What I liked best was . . . 1) Perspectives of educators (all district, college and university faculty present) and information about mathematics at all levels, including concerns, frustrations, new ideas, and different points of view. • Chance to hear about math at all levels. • The discussion and perspective of educators from other grades and districts. • Sharing with people from all levels. Hearing frustrations, new ideas from each group. • Communicating concerns across the grade levels. • Discussing the problems with others and getting so many different points of view. • The variety of the grade levels involved; this offered a variety of knowledge from all areas of education. • Interacting with K-12 representatives and seeing how our thinking is very similar. • Discussing problems with other educators and hearing from the different groups. • Sharing ideas with other teachers. • Meeting with several districts to get ideas and see commonality among districts. • Collaboration of ideas with other educators sharing “awakening” of “eye-opening” data. • Having the opportunity to hear teachers form all levels give the concerns of mathematics and how we can make our students successful! • The sharing of ideas across the room. Also, appreciated getting the facts of where we are today. 2) Increased awareness of differences between college expectations and TAKS. • Seeing the difference between college expectations and TAKS. • Collaboration of ideas with other educators, sharing “awakening” of “eye- opening” data. 3) Opportunity for small group conversations; getting to talk; great and fair opportunity to express opinion. • Conversation in small groups. • Sharing ideas. Challenging each other. • Dialogue among people at the table. • The conversation and ideas. • Talking with colleagues. • Getting to talk and work with the members of your table. • Discussion. • Discussion group (except for Mary Kay’s negative comments; after she left group did much better. Praises to Nancy who led our group by her attempts to stay positive.) • Discussion at table. Relaxed atmosphere. • The great conversations that went on at our table. We had teachers/administration from Pre K-16. It was great to have an overall view of what is expected. • The way that every group has a fair opportunity to express their opinion. 4) Group activities, i.e., opportunity to share experiences; ask questions; discover areas that need more attention; challenging each other; synthesizing. • The best part about this workshop was the group activities. The group activities give us the opportunity to share experiences, ask questions, and discover areas that need lots of focus on. • The group activities. • Table discussions and synopsis of each table group discussion. Very beneficial. • Sharing ideas with other teachers. • Hearing from such a diverse group that the issues/problems/concerns are the same as I perceive and hear on a daily basis in my position as a curriculum coordinator. • Sharing knowledge, presentations, and working with groups. • Round table activities and large group presentation. • The group work. I heard a lot of different ideas from my group. • Activity 1 and 2 discussion was great. • I liked the team activities discussions. 5) Opportunity for discussion/dialogue with teachers of different levels (K-08 and high school teachers, with postsecondary education faculty, with early childhood education, with PK-16 and administration. • Dialogue with K-8 and high school teachers. • The opportunity to discuss with different levels. • Discussion with a variety of levels of individuals. Hearing new ideas. • The opportunity to learn from post secondary educators. Our thoughts and ideas and needs are much more alike than different. I plan to follow up by connecting with Del Mar for some possible combined staff development. • Visiting with people from other schools/colleges. • Meeting and talking with early childhood educators. • Dialogue among representatives of many different levels of math education. • The great conversations that went on at our table. We had teachers/administration from Pre K-16. It was great to have an overall view of what is expected. • The dialogue and conversations. Meeting the college level people. • Opportunity to communicate with teachers and faculty. • The time to discuss the issues at hand with college teachers and other high school teachers. • Being able to communicate with teachers at other levels (and the cookies). 6) Discovering what was happening in college and public schools. 7) Networking, the food • Networking, the food, and the time to be able to share and listen to all the different ideas. • The opportunity to network with others. The fact that we are all in the same boat. The more people we have working on the problem together, the better. • Being able to communicate with teachers at other levels (and the cookies). 8) Collaboration between the wide range of professional educators and the great ideas. 9) Knowing what methods work for others to make our students successful. • The opportunity to hear views from other teachers and knowing what methods work for others. • Having the opportunity to hear teachers form all levels give the concerns of mathematics and how we can make our students successful! • Being able to communicate with others to gain a better understanding of what can get done to help students succeed. 10) Knowing that we all have the same issues. 11) Energy of talking to people from other areas of education. 12) Informative presentation of data; short, regional, to the point presentations. • The presentation of information. • The sharing of ideas across the room. Also, appreciated getting the facts of where we are today • The collaboration of ideas with other educators, sharing “awakening” of “eye- opening” data. • Very informative information. The fact that I hope the ideas are in the right hands now. • That the speakers were very short and to the point with their talks. • Regional mathematics data. Working in smaller groups that contained the whole spectrum of mathematics. Listening to reports form all of the groups. Establishing a mathematics network. 13) Open discussion between public school and higher education–no holds barred. 14) K-16 integration of groups (how we were grouped) • We were sitting with all levels of educators. • Being able to talk to different levels of people (all levels of educators). • Get to meet the counterparts from high schools. • The way we were grouped. PK-16, not just elementary, here and higher education there. 15) Team participation of groups. • The sharing of ideas. • The team participation of our group • I liked the team activities discussions. 16) Collegial environment, relaxed atmosphere • The collegial environment of professionals working together without pointing fingers or getting too over concerned on statistics and data. 2. What I liked least was . . . 1) Irrelevant sharing of information; not on task • All good. • Nothing. 2) Repetitious, allowing for non-productive statements, for ideas without additional insights or concrete solutions. • Somewhat repetitious. Allowed statements to be made that weren’t productive. Example, be allowed to each what higher education wants rather than TEKS/TAKS. • Repetition of ideas during “Next Steps” portion of conversation. • Repetition of same ideas without additional insights or concrete solutions. 3) PowerPoint Information, no notes provided. • Data powerpoints. • Powerpoint presentation without provided notes. Too much information without having the slides to make notes made internalizing the concepts difficult. • Too much statistics. Statistics were overdone. • Counting backwards for crowd control. • Speakers with graphs and stats. • Counting backwards to gain control. • Small visuals in large setting. Too many statistics. • Panel discussion. Most attendees seemed to tune out. • Powerpoint presentation too long. • Reading at Powerpoint presentations. • The Roadmap presentation. 4) No agenda • Too much sharing that was not relevant. Too many different ideas not on task. • We did not get an agenda. Time frame was different. • Our agendas. 5) Different timeframe • We did not get an agenda. Time frame was different. 6) Time of workshop; too late in day; too long • The hour the meeting was held. Too late in the day. • Being here at the end of a very full day. • Too long. • The time of day the workshop took place. • Time of day. Maybe have it a little earlier like 1 to 4 p.m. • The time for this conversation. I prefer the program during the day. Not evening. • Inservice was held too later for a work night. • How late it ended. • The meeting started too early. Our high school is out at 4 p.m., and I could not make it to Del Mar by 4:30 p.m. (I missed dinner and I am starving...lunch at 11:30 am. Was a long time ago!) • Too long. 7) More time needed for discussion for in-depth discussion • We need more time to discuss • So much to do–too little time. • Lack of time to get in-depth on anything. • We were not given enough time in our groups to really develop some ideas that were born. • Devoting so much time to have people read with little interpretation and limited our chart presentations to one minute. Re-consider time division. • Limited short times. • The forced workshop environment. The extremely short time frames of conversations and reporting. Getting cut off constantly and hearing others get cut off. 8) Limited supplies to communicate ideas on paper. 9) Acoustics; location of screen; size of room • Not being able to see or hear when presentations were made. Also, too long. I’m tired • Had difficulty understanding some of the people reporting out from groups. • Room was too large. Could not see material on the screen (multiple screen may have helped.) Need mics for group presenters. • Small visuals in large setting. Too many statistics. • No microphone to pass for speakers. • That there were not enough screens and some people were unable to see what was being presented. 10) Re-division of teams from schools, colleges, universities: sitting with others not from respondent’s school • Having to sit with others not from my district. At first, it was uncomfortable, but it was a good idea to share with different people. • Separation of my school district. (Separation of security blanket.) 11) The food. We should have more variety or simply finger food. 12) Reporting out: Having to present in front of others. 13) Lack of approaches to improving math background of PK and early grades • Too much on the results of the students. Tell us more about what we can do to improve the math background of the P-K and early grades. 14) Not getting Activities 1 & 2 ahead of time • The fact that we did not get the questions of Activities 1 and 2 earlier. So that we could think about them more efficiently. 15) Not knowing what will happen as a result of conversations • How can we keep the momentum going? • Solutions. What is going to be done? • Not knowing end purpose. A tangible helpful outcomes “solutions.” • There were few answers–a lot of questions, good questions. We need more answers. 3. What do you think the next steps should be? 1) Eliminate the gaps; connect the disconnection between K-16 levels • Get public schools and colleges together to eliminate gaps. There are BIG ones. • Create a pilot program for high schools and colleges to close the gap. • Continue bridging the gap between 12-16. Getting involved with professors and other teachers. • Really explore why there is a disconnect between K-12 and 13-16 in both alignment and curriculum. • Vertical alignment in K-16. Mentor system. Assessment alignment. • Vertical teaming high school–college. Assessment gap between high school and college needs to be addressed. • Vertical planning and time for implementation. • Find college instructors to partner with high schools. Find community funding to sponsor technology and tutors (college students) for each high school. • Collaboration of what is important. How do we achieve success? Vertical alignment K-college. Alignment of testing materials and curriculum. • Involve “real world” users of mathematics. The vertical alignment between college/university AND professional real world needs to also be explored. • Better connections between K-16 learning levels. • Continue the discussions between schools and universities. • Implement conversations between college and high school; high school and middle school; and middle school and elementary schools. • More communication and vertical alignment through college. Discuss calculator issues and resolve. • Vertical communication. Assessment alignment. 2) Vertical alignment 3) Mentor System • Vertical alignment in K-16. Mentor system. Assessment alignment. • Vertical teaming high school–college. Assessment gap between high school and college needs to be addressed. • Mentor program throughout year. Pilot program. Vertical teaming between high school and college. Alignment of assessments between high school and college. • Bring in legislators who are on the education committee so we can voice our concerns. • Committee overlooking this get together read carefully what was said and consider all our recommendations. • Mentoring and increased vertical alignment (teaming). • I’m a first year teacher. Mentor system would be great. • Vertical communication. Assessment alignment. 4) Assessment alignment, addressing gap between high school and college assessment • Vertical alignment in K-16. Mentor system. Assessment alignment. • Vertical teaming high school–college. Assessment gap between high school and college needs to be addressed. • Provide teachers with more workshops and information on how to teach math at all levels. • Find college instructors to partner with high schools. Find community funding to sponsor technology and tutors (college students) for each high school. • Standard test at all level; standard grading for every final for every course; standard re-test to ensure to readiness of each student for every level; more coordination between different levels; make the teaching position more attractive (try to attract the best qualifiers.) 5) Sharing what works • Sharing what works. Question–Reality of the time entailed to do this type of work and have it impact what districts actually do and changing higher ed where it needs to change. • Continued dialog. Development of teachers and success. 6) Keeping meaningful dialogue K-16, including feedback between levels • Keep open and meaningful dialogue between all levels, especially public school and college. • Provide us with copies of the charts (activities). More feedback from colleges to high schools to middle schools to intermediate to elementary. • More interaction between IHE faculty (especially content faculty) and public school teachers. More (any at all!) communication between education faculty and content faculty!!! • More discussion of various problems faced. Different districts face different problems. Maybe a session with administrators hearing what problems the teachers feel they are facing. 7) Who knows? • Who knows. There were lots of great ideas tonight. 8) Publish and share activity charts • Provide teachers with more workshops and information on how to teach math at all levels. • Publish the results of the green and blue charts since these come from the “hands on” people. • Provide us with copies of the charts (activities). More feedback from colleges to high schools to middle schools to intermediate to elementary. 9) Time for implementation • Vertical planning and time for implementation. 10) Sequential continuum enabling a) Teachers to teach their grade levels, not the ones before or the ones after b) Curriculum for PK-12 which tests TAKS, not what is coming in the next grade level • A sequential continuum that enables teachers to teach their grade level–not the ones before or the ones after. • Establish reasonable continuous curriculum for Pre K-12 and test the TEKS, not what’s coming in the next grade level. 11) Funding for technology and college student tutors for each high school • Connect the disconnection between K-12 and college/university level. 12) Elements to consider in development of a K-12 plan for success. a. Continue this type of conference/conversations on mathematics b. Gather info c. Share with participants d. Invite participants to work on next level e. Involve “real world” users of mathematics f. Address needs regarding increased time to work on skills and concepts g. Pilot mentoring system (PK to 16 teachers and faculty) with regular meetings for sharing specific activities, such as area grade levels to review TAKS objectives and evaluate TEKS’ pay stipends h. Create a committee to develop action plan i. Teacher exchange/best practices approach j. Provide opportunities for teachers to build essential skills to help promote success of students k. Bring actual teaching techniques into conference l. Reflect on what K-12 can do for 13-16 and vice versa m. Time n. Money o. Establish reasonable continuous sequential Actual Participant Comments About a K-16 Plan • A plan! Get all info together and share with all participants. An invitation to work on the next level. • Planning between high school and college about what is required for success in college. • Involve “real world” users of mathematics. The vertical alignment between college/university AND professional real world needs to also be explored. • More alignment and time to work on skills and concepts. • If we do a pilot, why not a mentoring pilot to work this way: college prof–high school teacher–middle school teacher–elementary school teacher–kindergarten teacher. Have them share with each other on a regular basis–specific activities. Pay stipends!! • Meet area grade levels to evaluate TEKS. • Teachers should be given more opportunities to build essential skills os that teachers can promote success in their students. • We should review the TEKS objectives. Some TEKS overlap (ex. Sci/SS cover weather, Math/Sci cover temp, time etc.) among others. • We should do this more often, but bring actual teaching techniques into the conference. For instance how would all the first grade teachers teach a concept and so on. • Continue having conversations on Math. • Create a committee (or d) and develop an action plan. • What do you have on the agenda for next year? • I’ll introduce the topics at middle school and high school. Continue the dialogue between K-12 and 13-16. Find what K-12 can do for 13-16 and what 13-16 can do for K-12 (as opposed to higher levels “helping” lower levels). • Time and money. • Exchange teachers from school to school. More conversations. • Suggestions should be delivered to the school districts. • Academic Booster Club. Coastal Bend type of CAMT. • More teachers with more chances to teach. Better communication among schools and universities. • Educating teachers in upgrading their basic skills and teaching methods. More workshops available to support math teachers and include vertical planning. • Begin to pilot some programs that include mentoring and curriculum alignment. • Alignment and discussions Best Practices. • Brainstorming/problem solving conferences to come up with solution models to put into practice as a model. • Plans of action–We need a huge database of very informative mentors/aids that are available to be resources for those who need it. • Initiate a plan of action. • Start a pilot program. Communicate between high school and college. • Start a pilot program will all recommendations. • Find funding to help districts attend needed training; provide opportunities for administrators to positively respond to the needs of the classroom teachers. (Find out what is really going on in the classrooms and what their teachers need to correct deficiencies); see some of these suggestions put into action and not sit in a report somewhere. 13) Internships as part of teacher preparation • Internship as part of teacher preparation. • An internship program in Texas where a teacher spends a year in an internship at a 2/3 salary with the other 1/3 going to a mentor from the university who would spend time every week in the classroom with the teacher. 14) Provide suggestions to school districts, colleges, universities • We need to have a follow-up and get the administration together on all school districts to see what suggestions have come out of this and what they (we) can do.