Category Archives: News

“Calculus: The Musical!” Coming April 2

A performance of “Calculus: The Musical!” is coming to St. Vrain on April 2. The show is described as “a comic ‘review’ of the concepts and history of calculus.”

  • When: Monday, April 2, 2018 at 7:00 PM
  • Where: Silver Creek High School Auditorium (4901 Nelson Rd, Longmont, CO 80503)
  • Who: Promises to be entertaining to the arithmophobe and the rocket scientist alike
  • Cost: Free to St. Vrain students and staff; $5.00 for non-St Vrain students/parents

For more information, please contact Matt Smedley ( or click here.

New High School Instructional Materials Adopted

On April 12, the St. Vrain Board of Education approved the adoption of new instructional materials for all high school mathematics courses (including middle school Algebra 1 & Geometry) after a yearlong pilot during the 2016-2017 school year:

For Algebra 1-Geometry-Algebra 2 (A-G-A), each teacher will receive the following:

  • Print Teacher’s Edition
  • Classroom set of 15 print student editions

All teachers and students will have a digital license (web and app access) to access the full program, including PDFs and interactive features.  The teacher license includes access to all ancillary teacher resources.

For the “electives,” (all courses above Algebra 2, including Intermediate Algebra), each teacher will receive the following:

  • Print Teacher’s Edition & teacher resources
  • Classroom set of 30 print student editions

Students will have access to an eText that can be downloaded onto the iPad mini for offline access.

Elementary Mathematics Pilot Selection for 2017-2018

St. Vrain Valley Schools will pilot Pearson’s enVisionmath2.0 for elementary mathematics during the 2017-2018 school year.  Since fall, a committee of District teachers and administrators have been reviewing and evaluating candidate programs, leading to this pilot selection.  Thank you to all of the St. Vrain staff, parents, and community members that participated in providing feedback in this process.  The complete timeline for the pilot and adoption is as follows:

  • 2016-2017: Review & evaluate candidate programs; determine one program for pilot
  • 2017-2018: Pilot selected program in 1-2 classrooms per school
  • 2018-2019: Implement selected program in all St. Vrain classrooms

Click here to see the adoption committee’s meeting notes and resources associated with this process.

Click here to view the list of pilot teachers for 2017-2018.

Enactive – Iconic – Symbolic Concept Development in Mathematics

Check out this “PLC Byte” on the development of mathematical concepts through the Enactive – Iconic – Symbolic progression.  Some discussion questions as you view the short webinar:

  • What are the concepts of Enactive – Iconic – Symbolic?
  • How do these concepts relate to other educational theories?
  • How can the concepts of Enactive – Iconic – Symbolic support the development of mathematical understanding by students?

St. Vrain Math Blog – “Top 100 Math Blogs” #100!

I received an interesting e-mail the morning of August 26, 2016:

“I would like to personally congratulate you as your blog St. Vrain K-12 Mathematics has been selected by our panelist as one of the Top 100 Math Blogs on the web … I personally give you a high-five and want to thank you for your contribution to this world. This is the most comprehensive list of Top 100 Math Blogs on the internet and I’m honored to have you as part of this! Also, you have the honor of displaying the following badge on your blog.”

This site serves as a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) resource for the St. Vrain community. Even though it is more of a website vs. a true blog, it’s good to know this space is providing relevant resources and information for mathematics education. Please contact me on how this space can be continuously improved.

Synthesis of IES-Funded Research on Mathematics: 2002–2013

From Education Week blog: “A new paper from the Institute for Education Sciences lists 28 ways federally funded research has changed what we know about how to teach whole numbers, fractions, algebra, and other math topics.

IES, part of the U.S. Department of Education, funded more than 200 studies about math instruction between 2002 and 2013. A synthesis of that research, published this month, lays out some of the contributions these studies have made to the field.”

View the research paper to see the IES-funded research contributions (28) on Whole Numbers, Operations, and Word Problem Solving in Elementary School, Fractions and Algebra in Middle School, and Development and Evaluation of Teacher Professional Development Approaches.

U.S. Wins Math Olympiad Two Years in a Row

From  “For the second year in a row, the U.S. team won first place at the 57th International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) in Hong Kong, July 6-16.

The IMO is the World Championship Mathematics Competition for High School students, where the brightest mathematics students from more than 100 countries compete. The winning U.S. team score was 214 out of a possible 252, ahead of the Republic of Korea (207) and China (204).” Read more of the story here.

Washington Post story

New NCTM President: Math Is About More Than College and Career Readiness

Matt Larson, a former high school math teacher and K-12 math curriculum specialist for the Lincoln, Neb., public schools, began his two-year term as president of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics in April. Education Week had the chance to catch up with Larson recently and ask about his priorities as president and what he thinks are some of the biggest issues facing math teachers today. Here are some snippets from that conversation.

“Deep Dive: Is Math Important?” – Aspen Ideas Festival

From the Aspen Ideas Festival:  Math is not just the language of numbers.  It is also not just a subject for school children.  What math, if any is important for adults?  Where does America stand in the world in math and how can we improve? Is it the teaching?  What kind of preparation do our youth need to succeed?  What do we know about other kids in the world and how they perform — and why?  The beauty of understanding math lies with how we frame questions and understand uncertainty.  How do we treat math in our society and can we perform at a high level?  (Duration – 1:18:33)