Current Practices and Trends in the Teaching of Mathematics



Gwen Johnson

Meeting Time:

Wed, 4:30-6:30

email address:


Ruth Patrick Science Ed Center


641-3552 (O); 649-6483 (H)

Office Hours:

M, W, F 8:00-9:00 AM or By appointment


Descriptive Information



Course Goals and Objectives:


Course Readings:

Course Requirements:


Late Assignments: No late assignments will be accepted without prior approval. In the event such permission is given, these late assignments will be penalized 10% per day and will not be accepted after the second day beyond the due date. If you are going to be absent on the day an assignment is due, please make arrangements for someone to turn in the assignment for you.

Honor Code: All students should be familiar with the USC-A Code of Academic Conduct, a copy of which may be found in the Student Handbook. Please review the sections on plagiarism and other forms of cheating. If you have any questions about these policies, feel free to consult with the instructor. Any evidence of violation of these standards will result in appropriate action by the instructor and possible dismissal from the professional program.

The following statement should appear on all assignments:

"On my honor as a University of South Carolina-Aiken student, I have neither given nor received any unauthorized aid on this assignment/examination. To the best of my knowledge I am not in violation of academic honesty."


Communication Skills: Communication Skills: Students will be expected to produce high quality work as a part of professional development. All work should reflect the attainment of college level skills in writing and elocution. Papers, lesson plans, and other assignments, except exams, that do not meet these standards will not be acceptable and will possibly be returned for correction and improvement and/or points will be deducted. The Writing Room is available for assistance with writing skills, and your attendance there will be required when deemed necessary.


Disabled Students: Any student having a learning or physical disability which might affect performance in this class should inform the instructor and Dr. Linda Matthews of the Counseling Center to verify your status and to provide the appropriate assistance.



Assignments: The following assignments and activities will be used in evaluating your level of achievement in this course. Criterion sheets for each assignment will be provided when an assignment is made. The instructor reserves the right to change and/or delete assignments. Assignments should be typed unless otherwise specified. Computers for word processing are available in B&E 238.
  1. Design a lesson applying use of graphics calculator in teaching a specific math topic.
  2. Critique a sample of computer software.
  3. Design a lesson utilizing "homemade" math manipulatives that addresses at least two areas of student difference.
  4. Identify and download from at least two web sites information for a mathematics lesson plan.
  5. Critique a research article examining a method(s) for teaching mathematics.
  6. All lessons must reflect NCTM Standards and SC Mathematics Framework and include instruction for varying group sizes and appropriate assessments.


Readings: In Text:
  1. Chapter 1: Small Group Learning
  2. Chapter 3: Teacher Sensitivity
  3. Chapter 4: Planning a Lesson
  4. Chapter 5: Strategies for Teaching More Effective Lessons
  5. Chapter 9: Problem-solving
  6. Chapter 10: Enriching Mathematics Instruction
  7. Chapter 11: Assessing, Evaluating, and Grading Students
  8. Chapter 12: Extracurricular Activities in Mathematics
  9. Chapter 13: Mathematically Deficient Students
  10. Chapter 16: Teaching as a Profession
  11. Chapter 6: Classroom Questioning

Selected sections from bibliography


Evaluation and Grading

Summary of Points

Class Discussion


Assignment #1


Assignment #2


Assignment #3


Assignment #4


Assignment #5




Grading scale:
93%-100% = A
90%- 92% = B+
87%- 89% = B
82%- 86% = C+
78%- 81% = C
74%- 77% = D+
70%- 73% = D
< 70% = F


Cangelosi, J.S. (1996). Teaching mathematics in secondary and middle school. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Merrill, An imprint of Prentice Hall.

Brumgaugh, D., Ashe, D., Ashe, J. & Rock, D. (1997). Teaching secondary mathematics. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers.

Handbook of research on mathematics teaching and learning. (1992). New York: Macmillan.

Mathematics education: A handbook for teachers. (1994). New Zealand: The Wellington College of Education.

NCTM (varies) Addenda Series (K-12). Washington, DC: NCTM.

NCTM (1989). Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics. Reston, VA: NCTM, Inc.

NCTM (1970). The Teaching of Secondary School Mathematics (33rd Yearbook). Washington, DC: NCTM.

National Research Council (1989). Everybody Counts: A Report to the Nation on the Future of Mathematics Education. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.

South Carolina State Dept. of Education. (1993). South Carolina Mathematics Framework. Columbia, SC: author.

Thomas, D.A. (1992). Teenagers, teachers, and mathematics. Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon.


Course Schedule:

Two hours on Wednesday evening.