Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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CommunicationSession 02 Overviewtab atab bTab ctab dtab eReference
Part C

Defining Communication
  The Communication Standard | Using Effective Questioning | Using Precise Language | Additional Methods | Goals | Your Journal
"To be prepared for the future, high school students must be able to exchange mathematical ideas effectively with others."

(NCTM, 2000, p. 349)


Not long ago, students worked alone on mathematical problems. Communication was often one-way: Teachers lectured and students spoke only to provide answers to problems.

Collaboration with other students was considered cheating, and general discussion among students might have been disruptive, rather than helpful. Students seldom were asked to write about mathematics in prose, or to present and defend their thinking, except in copying homework answers to the board.

Today, this is no longer appropriate. Students must be encouraged to work together and communicate about mathematical ideas, in the same way they are accustomed to communicating about literature or social studies. As teachers, we must learn better ways to communicate with our students and help students communicate with each other. The NCTM makes a strong case that improvement in communication enables teachers to create supportive and challenging environments that reach all students and deepen their understanding of mathematics.

How does the work you've done in this session relate to this standard? Let's review and expand on what we've covered.

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