By Ron Larson and Robyn Silbey

Mathematical Practices Easy Access Study Guide

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Mathematical Practices by Ron Larson

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About the Authors

Ron Larson received his Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Colorado in 1970. At that time he accepted a position with Penn State University in Erie, Pennsylvania, and currently holds the rank of professor of mathematics at the university. Ron is the lead author of over two dozen mathematics textbooks from 6th grade through calculus. Many of his texts, such as the 10th edition of his calculus text, are leaders in their markets. Ron Larson is one of the pioneers in the use of multimedia to enhance the learning of mathematics. He has authored multimedia programs that range from 1st grade through calculus. To help with the development of his programs, Ron founded Larson Texts, Inc., which with its wholly owned subsidiary, Big Ideas Learning, LLC., employs about 70 people.

Robyn Silbey holds a Masters of Science degree in Mathematics Education from McDaniel College and a Bachelors of Science degree in Elementary Education from the University of Maryland, College Park. Robyn taught for 36 years in Montgomery County, Maryland, a large, urban/suburban school district with a widely diverse population. She was a classroom teacher for 11 years, and a school-based math coach for 25 years. For over 30 years, she has authored and co-authored books, computer software, workbooks and articles. Robyn currently collaborates with school districts and individual public, private and charter schools around the country to raise teacher quality and student achievement.

About Mathematical Practices

The Common Core Standards for Mathematical Practice describe the “Habits of Mind” that nurture and develop critical thinking and problem solving in mathematics. These practices rest on important processes and proficiencies with longstanding importance in mathematics education. The first four are NCTM process standards of problem solving, abstract reasoning, communication, and modeling with mathematics. The second four are the strands of mathematical proficiency specified in the National Research Council’s report Adding It Up: using tools strategically, attending to precision, making use of structure, and expressing regularity in repeated reasoning. In short, the Mathematical Practices ask us as teachers to move from a teacher centered classroom to a student centered classroom. You can download a poster of the eight Mathematical Practices.