Illinois State University Mathematics Department

MAT 223: Introduction to Secondary Mathematics Education



Attending a Professional Conference


"Professional organizations foster a strong sense of community through a variety of strategies, such as written materials, videotapes, journals, and conferences. They provide the vehicles for teachers of mathematics to link with other professionals."

--Professional Standards For Teaching Mathematics, p. 186

Those involved in mathematics education need to take an active role in professional development. Participation in the professional community--attending professional conferences and workshops, taking additional course work, reading and discussing ideas presented in professional publications--fosters the professional development of mathematics educators at all levels.

This assignment involves you with a community of mathematics educators. You will attend the Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics (ICTM) Annual Meeting to be held in Springfield, Illinois, Friday or Saturday, 20 or 21 October.

Based on your participation at the conference, complete the following tasks.

Report on Conference Participation

Attend at least two different workshops or sessions and submit a brief summary of each one. After indicating the title, time, and number of the session as well as the name of its presenter, summarize the presentation. Describe briefly the significant aspects of the presentation as well as points of concern or disagreement that you want to raise.

In addition, spend some time in the exhibit area. Publishers will have products displayed for you. Pick out one new high school textbook (copyright 1999 or newer) and spend time looking through it. Note the chapter titles, the contents of each chapter, and how exercises and problems are laid out for students. Pay attention to the uses of color and photographs and other aspects of layout. Write a one-to-two paragraph report of your evaluation of the textbook. Your report should summarize the information above and include any other comments you care to include about your impressions of the book from your perspective as a future professional.

Attending an ICTM meeting has been described by former students as one of the most useful and interesting components of the course. Students have learned about the profession, have made contacts that proved useful at a later time, have garnered ideas about successful classroom activities, and have learned about textbooks currently used in secondary schools. You are encouraged to attend this conference.

Your report is due within two weeks of the conference, by class time on 31 October. The paper you turn in should include the information described above. Your work will be evaluated based on clarity of presentation, completeness and specificity of your responses, and the degree to which you have shown in-depth thought and reflection.