- Year 2017
- NSF Noyce Award # 1557326
- First Name M. Kathleen
- Last Name Heid
- Discipline Other: Mathematics Education
Gina Foletta, The Pennsylvania State University, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rose Mary Zbiek, The Pennsylvania State University, email@example.com
James Sellers, The Pennsylvania State University, firstname.lastname@example.org
M. Kathleen Heid, The Pennsylvania State University, email@example.com
The mathematics teacher shortage problem requires more newly certified mathematics teachers (Ingersoll, 2001, 2011, 2012; Ingersoll & May, 2010, 2011; Ingersoll & Perda, 2010) and closing the ?revolving door? of teaching through which large numbers of teachers leave teaching (Darling-Hammond & Sykes, 2003; Ingersoll & Perda, 2010). Rural teachers are thought to be more likely than other teachers to outmigrate to a suburban or urban school (Eppley, 2009). Teachers leave high poverty, high minority, and urban schools at a rate higher than those leaving wealthy schools (Ingersoll, 2011). Preservice teachers? beliefs about urban teaching settings, social justice, and diversity are important factors in developing commitments to teach, and perhaps to remain teaching, in urban schools (Aragon, Culpepper, McKee, & Perkins, 2013). The Program benefits the Scholars, the secondary mathematics students and teachers in participating districts, and University?s teacher preparation curriculum.
The Penn State University Secondary Mathematics Noyce Scholars Program has four major goals: (a) Increase number of math majors who become certified to teach secondary mathematics. (b) Enhance the understanding by prospective secondary mathematics students of teaching mathematics in high-need rural and urban schools. (c) Identify factors of the program that may lead to mathematics majors in the Penn State Noyce program accepting or not accepting positions teaching mathematics in high-need rural and urban schools. (d) Identify factors that may lead to the retention or lack of retention of mathematics majors in the Penn State Noyce program teaching mathematics in high-need rural and urban schools. Development takes place through Noyce seminars, an urban immersion experience, explorations of poverty and other factors that affect classroom learning and teaching, and mentoring teams of school- and university-based mathematics educators.
Each Noyce Scholar will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a bachelor?s degree in secondary education (mathematics) or a master’s degree in mathematics education. The program is technology-intensive and includes tutoring of students from high-need schools in an Upward Bound program or a second-language learning program, experience in designing and teaching sequences of lessons in high-need rural or urban schools, participation in seminars that focus on place-based teaching in high-need schools, and student teaching in a high-need school.
The Project is framed by place-based education, which provides principles for teaching that apply to the nuances of high-need urban and rural schools. The framework informs unique seminars that draw on the expertise of scholars in urban education, rural education, poverty, identity, and place-based curriculum. The mathematics connection is through the direct relationship of place-based education to mathematical modeling.
The first Noyce scholars begins in August 2017. Key deliverables are seminar curriculum and partnership of university with urban and rural school districts. Anticipated outcomes and findings include a detailed description of preparation and enduring understandings of teachers who enter teaching positions in high-need urban and rural school. It documents effects of intensive practicum experiences in those schools; a philosophical orientation of teaching as place-based; and extensive integrated background in mathematics, technology, mathematics education. It provides information on factors that influence desire to teach in and remain teaching in high-need schools, especially in the context of a program that gives concerted attention to place-based instruction in rural and urban settings. The project also adds to knowledge about use of mathematics technology in high-need schools and ways in which prospective teachers draw on their mathematical knowledge in high-need schools.
Each Noyce Scholar will likely have a positive effect on more than 150 students per year, in settings that regularly experience shortages of secondary mathematics teachers. Careful selection of Scholars who have an interest in or background in urban-centered or rural schools, extensive mentoring program, initial experience working with students from high-need schools, and extensive preparation in both mathematics and mathematics education, should increase the likelihood of Noyce Scholars to continue to teach in a high-need school. Experiences prepare Noyce Scholars to give their students a mathematical experience that capitalizes on available technology. Leadership experience that the Noyce Scholars have in planning and presenting to colleagues and to groups of teachers at conferences will better position them to take on leadership roles in mathematics teaching at their schools, resulting in an eventual influence on other mathematics teachers in their schools.