Seminar Event Detail

Teaching Mathematics

Date:  Tuesday, October 02, 2012
Location:  3096 East Hall (5:15 PM to 6:30 PM)

Title:  New Pathways for Mathematical Talent

Abstract:   Students from underserved backgrounds face many challenges to excelling at math. In addition to often difficult school and home lives, they lack exposure to the traditional "pathways" that their peers might follow to mathematical success, such as math clubs, competitions, and summer programs. As a result, their exposure to mathematical abstraction and challenging tasks is often very limited. Moreover, there are few if any very good mathematical role models for them, and their conception of what comes after high school is often fraught with potentially harmful inaccuracies.

In this talk, I'll introduce the Summer Program in Mathematical Problem Solving, a three-week residential summer program that helps students without access to advanced mathematical study prepare themselves for further work. We'll discuss the mathematics and teaching styles within the program; the way we try to bring students into a "mathematical culture" and a sense of the opportunities before them; and how we try to show them what mathematics really is. Because the program is a three-week long residential program with very limited space, we also had to make decisions about whom to recruit; we will discuss how we identified students with insight into and motivation for learning mathematics.


Speaker:  Daniel Zaharopol
Institution:  Learning Unlimited, Chicago

Event Organizer:   Gavin LaRose


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