Teaching First Year Algebra
Faced with teaching first year algebra? This course provides useful ideas, strategies and resources for teachers of first year algebra. The ideas, approaches and strategies in this course should make teaching first year algebra less abstract and more satisfying to both teacher and student. Participants will be asked to read several articles and to experiment with a variety of creative approaches to make algebra concepts more concrete. Each teacher enrolled will be allowed to choose activities most appropriate for his or her classroom. These resources are designed to reinforce important algebraic concepts and to supplement the text currently used.
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As a beginning mathematics teacher at an urban high school, I quickly realized that drawing on student interests and experiences was essential to engaged learning. This insight has guided my work in education as a K-12 instructional coach, a developer of mathematics curriculum, and an instructor of professional development. My courses aim to create space for teachers to gather around relevant ideas and practical experiences as they deepen their knowledge and professional practice. Course topics reflect the concerns and curiosities of practicing teachers, equipping them to directly apply learning to classroom teaching. I value the diverse perspectives that Fresno Pacific University students bring to the learning community, and I hope that participants in my courses will be as inspired as I have been by the ideas and dialogue generated here.