Becoming the Math Teacher You Wish You'd Had: Ideas and Strategies for Vibrant Classrooms

Becoming the Math Teacher You Wish You'd Had: Ideas and Strategies for Vibrant Classrooms
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While mathematicians describe mathematics as playful, beautiful, creative, and captivating, many students describe math class as boring, stressful, useless, and humiliating. In her new book, Tracy Zager helps teachers close this gap by making math class more like mathematics.

You will find this book jam-packed with new thinking from these vibrant classrooms. You will grapple with big ideas: How is taking risks inherent to mathematics? How do mathematicians balance intuition and proof? How can teachers value both productive mistakes and precision?

You will also find dozens of practical teaching techniques you can try in your classroom right away--strategies to stimulate students to connect ideas; rich tasks that encourage students to wonder, generalize, conjecture, and persevere; routines to teach students how to collaborate.

This important book helps us develop instructional techniques that will make the math classes we teach so much better than the math classes we took.



Readers, be warned: you are about to fall in love. Tracy writes, “Good math teaching begins with us.” With those six words, she invites you on a journey through this most magnificent book of stories and portraits.… This book turns on its head the common misconception of mathematics as a black–and-white discipline and of being good at math as entailing ease, speed, and correctness. You will find it full of color, possibility, puzzles, and delight.… Let yourself be drawn in.

-Elham Kazemi, Professor, math education, University of Washington
About the Author

Tracy has worked in many schools over the course of her career, first as a fourth-grade teacher, then as a supervisor of preservice teachers and their inservice mentors, and currently as a math coach. Becoming the Math Teacher You Wish You’d Had grew out of Tracy’s work in classrooms, where she's most in her element, learning together with teachers and students over time.