As a math interventionist for the past five years, I’ve heard the struggles teachers have with meeting the needs of all their diverse learners especially their struggling learners. All teachers want to be effective in meeting the needs of their students, but they don’t know how outside the curriculum. With the increasing rigor of the Common Core, teachers need specialized math instruction training along with Professional Learning Communities, PLC, to assist in meeting the needs of their diverse learners. The Common Core Math Standards not only places importance on the standards, but also on 8 essential mathematical practices. The “what” has been identified by the Common Core Standards, but how teachers carry out their instruction to meet the standards and 8 math practices is fuzzy. If teachers don’t understand the underlying foundations of the math standards they’re teaching, it is difficult to meet the needs of their struggling learners. Teachers need to be provided opportunities within their district to learn how to effectively teach math and implement the 8 mathematical practices deemed by the Common Core into their instruction. If teachers are given the tools and knowledge to meet the needs of their learners effectively, they can use the knowledge in PLCs to create ongoing learning and meaningful instruction in their classrooms.
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