Summary and Final Reports
Mathematics Education in Canada: What needs to be done?
The fourth Canadian Mathematics Education Forum (CMEF) was held in Vancouver, April 30 to May 3, 2009 with about 180 participants, made up of approximately 70 university mathematicians and math educators, 60 teachers and coordinators, 30 graduate students and 20 representatives from government, publishing, parent groups, etc. Its theme was “curriculum and assessment,” and it was cosponsored by CMS and PIMS with major support from SSHRC, SFU, Fields, CRM, CAIMS, SSC, MITACS, Nelson, Pearson, Wiley and Maplesoft. Two major aspects of the Forum set it somewhat apart from comparable meetings, first that it centred around the work of 13 working groups which had been collaborating already for many months before the actual meeting, and secondly that the meeting brought together a wide range of folks engaged in the mathematics education. In particular it is rare that so many teachers from across the country are able to come together to share ideas and talk with university folk, and with publishers and government officials in panels and working group encounters. We mention this in that of all the comments we received from participants, the most “wonder-full” were the comments from teachers that they were able to be part of such high level deliberations.
We had three plenary speakers, Rina Zazkis a professor of Mathematics Education at SFU (joint speaker with the Changing the Culture conference), Steve Rasmussen of Key Curriculum Press and Hugh Burkhardt of the Shell Centre in Nottingham. The soul of the meeting was perhaps provided by the panel discussions. Two of these were Reaction Panels of teachers and researchers which followed each of the second two talks. In addition, the opening panel featured a number of teachers from across Canada discussing the questions: “What did I need then? What do I need now?”
Plenary 1: Rina Zazkis, Simon Fraser University
Reconsidering basic mathematical assumptions in teacher education
Plenary 2: Hugh Burkhardt, Shell Center for Mathematical Education, University of Nottingham
Making school mathematics functional: a stool needs three legs
Plenary 3: Steven Rasmussen, President and Co-founder of Key Curriculum Press
The Vantage Point of Publisher: One View of Curriculum Development
Working Group Reports: