— Ali Grace Eiland (@AGEiland) June 15, 2018
You’re going to love it! Spent the year working with my niece for 8th IM and just finished up a couple of weeks leading a lab school experience from a 7th grade IM unit. 👊🏽
— Jennifer A. Eli (@jelimathed) June 15, 2018
If you are part of the online math community or a reader of Ed Reports, the fact that Illustrative Mathematics’ new middle school math curriculum is taking the math teaching community by storm is no surprise. We heard whisperings as it was being written and heard glowing reviews from the piloting districts. We recognized many of the research based instructional practices and structures. They were things we had worked hard to embed in our classroom – desperately trying to teach in ways true to our standards using materials that were criminally misaligned.
Since this curriculum is published by Open Up Resources, a non-profit publisher dedicated to “increasing equity in education by making excellent, top-rated curricula freely available to districts”, we didn’t have to wait. We logged on, dug in, and tried out a few lessons. But as anyone can tell you who has looked deeper, the materials are artfully crafted, with the key ideas of the grade woven and deepening throughout the course. Teaching anything less than the full curriculum is a disservice to the work.
And so next year – we’re all in.
Lots and lots of us.
— Kristin Perkins (@kperksmath) June 7, 2018
For some of us, it is with full district support, with training and coaches and enthusiastic teammates in our PLC to learn with. Open Up’s commitment to providing the curriculum freely to all means that lots of districts have money for training, and some of us have had the pleasure to attend and begin our work toward an awesome school year.
The past two days #LearnWithIm have been fantastic. Can’t wait to implement!
— Jennifer Miller (@jsmiller2763) June 13, 2018
— Kathy Howe (@kdhowe1) June 11, 2018
— ashley nivens (@apnivens21) June 11, 2018
— Elise Archibald (@MathSpecArch) June 11, 2018
But for others, they are venturing forth with very little back up. . . because they believe (hope) it will be what is best for their students.
If that is you, this series of posts is written with you in mind.
You don’t have to go it alone.
Some spots to learn:
- The Illustrative Mathematics blog: https://illustrativemathematics.blog/category/im-curriculum/.
Follow to receive emails when there is a new post, so you don’t have use your limited time to lurk expectantly.
- The Twitter hashtag #learnwithIM :
A place where the community of educators using or learning about the curriculum can ask questions, share successes, and collaborate to improve our practice. Not on twitter? Start by just googling the hashtag and seeing what types of things you find. You don’t have to make an account or sign in to read what is there. If there is a comment that interests you, click on the side to pop it out and read the full conversation. Twitter is a place that educational professionals go to share and learn. Since so much of our days are spent shut in a room with no other adult, we need this forum as a spot to grow our practice. When you are ready to ask a question or join a conversation, make a twitter account and join in. There is not an “in crowd” here. The authors of the curriculum are as likely to join the conversation as a first year teacher. All are welcome.**
- And for the summer at least, add this blog to that list.
I am a teacher on special assignment in a central California district, and my job for the next year is to support the teachers of my district as they spend a year piloting Illustrative Mathematics 6-8 curriculum. So while I am at it, thought I might as well add you to the list. I am a professional, but not an expert.* I’ll be sharing the things I am figuring out along the way and passing on to the teachers of our district. And to you too – welcome!
Next post – All in with OUR/IM – Materials Prep
*For experts I encourage you to find a IM sponsored training, even if you have to pay your own way. They are fabulous quality, and really gave those of us lucky enough to attend a clearer view of how it all works together.
**Other hashtags that will connect you to math teachers are #iteachmath and #mtbos . (Yes,that’s a weird hashtag. Follow the link if you are curious).