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PDS Site + Liaisons + Graduate Student + Teacher Candidates = Powerful Learning For All. Deborah Flurkey , ABD and Michelle Adams, B.S. Elementary, Early, and Special Education, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, IN.

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PDS Site + Liaisons + Graduate Student + Teacher Candidates = Powerful Learning For All

Deborah Flurkey, ABD and Michelle Adams, B.S.

Elementary, Early, and Special Education, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, IN

Student Mathematics AfteRschoolThinking Program(The SMART Program)

What: a free, 95 minute, enrichment program with high quality mathematics activities

When: once a week for 8 weeks in Spr. ‘07

Where:PDS site, DeVaney Elementary, Terre Haute, IN

Who:a cohort of professionals: an ISU professor, a faculty member from the PDS site, a doctoral graduate student serving as on-site manager, and twelve teacher candidates from a mathematics methods course.

Why:to find authentic learning experiences for our teacher candidates and meet the needs of our community’s children.

Purpose of SMART Program

to give teacher candidates high quality, experiential learning opportunities teaching mathematics in an authentic setting while creatively engaging young children in mathematical thinking and

to provide free learning experiences to all children, especially those considered at-risk for success in mathematics.

  • Conclusions
    • Teacher Candidates were asked to reflect on their experiences after each SMART Program session. Reflections were analyzed qualitatively. The following themes were apparent:
    • past experiences influenced TCs’ attitudes and beliefs toward mathematics
    • TCs held negative attitudes toward mathematics previous to the SMART Program
    • beliefs and attitudes changed during and after the SMART Program
    • TCs felt the SMART Program’s activities were important to both their own learning and children’s mathematics learning
  • Rationale
  • If teacher candidates (TCs) are to experience success in teaching mathematics, there are two critical factors for success:
    • TCs must have enough content knowledge in mathematics to teach effectively, and
    • TCs must feel confident in their abilities to teach mathematics.
  • Mathematics Activities Included
    • art, music and movement wherever possible
    • hands-on, experiential learning for children and teacher candidates
    • problem solving strategies
    • shared math problems
    • math games
    • computer-assisted instructional activities
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