EGUSD Math Generation: Overview 2016-17
The Elk Grove Unified School District is one of ten districts in the state of California selected by the S.D. Bechtel Foundation to support the implementation of Common Core State Standards in Mathematics for grades K-8. Our professional development model is called Math Generation and it focuses on developing teacher methods and practices, while also implementing professional learning communities that will advance mathematical instruction and embed it in the culture of our schools.
We know deep content knowledge is not only key, but essential to changing and improving instructional practice in every classroom and working in collaborative teams is a best practice.
A comprehensive education in mathematics is complex, requiring teachers to have a deep understanding of the mathematical knowledge that they are expected to teach. It also requires teachers be skilled at teaching in ways that effectively help all students build a strong foundation of conceptual understanding and problem solving strategies, rather than emphasizing procedural and textbook understandings. When content is taught systematically and coherently within and across grades, teachers can achieve the greatest impact on learning.
Mathematics lessons should engage students in solving and discussing tasks that promote reasoning and problem solving. On collaborative days, teachers plan lessons to prompt student interactions and discourse, with the goal of helping students make sense of mathematical concepts and procedures. During Math Generation professional development trainings, teachers have the opportunity to deepen their understanding of proficient student discourse and methods to engage discussion. When students are involved in the discussion they remain focused on the task at hand.
Teachers are encouraged to engage their students in whole group discourse through accountable talk moves, which include revoicing, restating, applying their own reasoning, and adding on.
The Math Generation team develops content-focused professional development paired with a common set of key, related instructional strategies that best support student learning and application of CCSS-M content. These strategies are known as the Core 4: Choose Three Ways, Think-Pair-Share, Starts, and Number Talks. Teachers continue to receive support to cultivate, apply, and refine these instructional strategies through Math Generation trainings and during their site level Professional Learning Community meetings.
The establishment of site-based Professional Learning Communities (PLC), facilitated by trained PLC teacher leaders, is a critical outcome of our initiative, which will sustain the continuous improvement of mathematics instruction, knowledge development, and skill building beyond district-wide professional development workshops. Trained PLC leaders facilitate structured PLC meetings where teachers systematically engage in critical inquiry on the relationship between practice and student learning in an effort to better meet the needs of individual students and inform and improve upon individual and collective practices.
The Math Generation professional development model addresses three critical needs simultaneously: developing teacher content, instruction, and practices that support the development of math education. Math Generation seeks to create communities of site-based professional practice, where knowledge and invention become a function of the community and result in continuous school improvement.
To learn more about Math Generation, please visit: http://blogs.egusd.net/mathgen