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Instructional Leadership Toolkit: Math Strand

This workshop is open to school principals and their instructional leadership teams. Principals are strongly encouraged to bring a team of two or three lead teachers with them

Workshop Description

Quality mathematics instruction is the integration of content, and pedagogy creatively applied to challenging and authentic problems. An effective teacher knows their content, has empathy for all learners and is an able and effective communicator of that content to students and colleagues alike. But what does sound practice in mathematics look like in the “era of the Common Core State Standards” and how can we support the integration of the Mathematical Practices called for in the CCSS in all of our schools?

We must challenge ourselves to answer these key questions: “What does a developmentally appropriate results-oriented mathematics classroom look like?” What strategies can math teacher leaders and supervising principals utilize to give teachers quality feedback regarding their mathematics instruction? How can we utilize the concept of “Instructional Rounds” to improve our ability to create the robust feedback systems that our teachers desperately need and want?

Course Goals/Objectives:

In this two part series, we will carefully examine these issues and provide strategies to broaden the expertise and skills professionals must have to bring an exemplary mathematics instructional approach to our schools. The first day of this series will be a foundational workshop to prepare participants for the laboratory experience they will engage in at Orange North Supervisory Union.
On day one, participants will explore examples of model lessons in key content areas of mathematics development to illustrate the elements of an effective and cohesive lesson and to ascertain if the classrooms we will be visiting actually promote mathematical thinking. We will examine the application and implementation of the Math CCSS, including both its perceived strengths and weaknesses as teachers attempt to put it to use in their classrooms this year. We will also examine various frameworks for classroom observations to help supervising principals, math teacher leaders and peer observers to make informed observations and provide specific and constructive feedback.

As Michael Fullan suggests in his new book The Principal: Three Keys to Maximizing Impact, we can now longer rely on the principal alone to provide instructional leadership. This must be a “team sport” if we hope to realize mathematical improvement for all students across our systems.

About the Instructor

Mahesh Sharma is known for his groundbreaking work in mathematics education, he is an author, teacher and teacher-trainer, researcher, consultant to public and private schools, as well as a public lecturer. He is the Chief Editor of Focus on Learning Problems in Mathematics, an international, interdisciplinary, research mathematics journal with readership in more than 70 countries, and the editor of the Math Notebook, a practical source of information for parents and teachers devoted to improving teaching and learning for all children.