I had the opportunity to attend the annual conference of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics this week. I joined a few other D30 administrators and teacher leaders. It was intellectually stimulating and reinforced that our math pedagogy and curriculum are strong! My workshops and presentations included foundations of instructional rigor, teaching for social justice, parent-teacher partnership, formative assessment practices, instructional coaching, and planning for the professional development of teachers.
A theme that ran through many of the week’s presentations was the importance of providing students with rich math tasks and asking questions that deepen student thinking. As Linda Gojak (past president of NCTM) explained, good questions allow students to make sense of a math situation and construct their own conceptual understanding. Our teachers’ role has shifted to that of being a facilitator of learning rather than simply