(Mi)2 Update July 2019
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In this Issue:

Making Math More Accessible: Online Resource

Do you struggle building the conceptual knowledge your students need because you lack the tools to help them explore the concept? The Math Learning Center has some great math apps that can help students explore quantity and make connections. Each app can be used as a web app or downloaded from the Apple or Chrome store. There are number racks, geoboards, fraction tiles, and more. Check out the site and see what apps could be used with your students.

Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics Annual Conference

At the end of the month the Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM) Annual Conference will be held at the Eberhard Center at the downtown campus of Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids. The Institute begins on Tuesday, July 30. Alt+Shift will hold a workshop preview of the Enhancing Math course. The two-day conference sessions will be held on Wednesday and Thursday, July 31 - August 1. Check out the schedule of the Institute sessions and the institute conference sessions to see what is offered and start marking sessions you are interested in.

Foundations of Math: Implementation Story

 Heather Gray
 Wines Elementary School
 Ann Arbor Public Schools

Heather teaches in a special education, self-contained classroom. She attended Foundations of Math: Teaching Students with Significant Disabilities this past school year. The following are her reflections on the course, the experiences of implementation, and what it has offered her and her students.

The training challenged me to see the importance of math for my students. We now spend an hour daily on math. We have a half-hour math meeting that is focused on moving students along the learning trajectories followed by a half-hour math center time that provides more individualized instruction using the Essential Elements and individualized education program (IEP) objectives. The training has allowed me to see strengths in my students I was previously unaware of. The kids feel more confident, and I see less frustration when working with them on their individual goals. Our math meeting has high levels of engagement, and the kids are excited to participate every day. I have embraced the "repetition with variety" mantra. Math meeting is one part of the day that I can generally count on to go well.
The greatest implementation challenge is effectively differentiating for the wide range of skill levels we have in our classroom. Some students are ready to move on before others. Finding ways to make sure every student is met where he or she is at, and then appropriately challenged, is the daily struggle. Finding the right way to organize all the materials was another hurdle. I was able to organize all of the math supplies in a cart with drawers and label the drawers so I can quickly find what I need. The teaching assistants and even the kids know where to go if they need a number line, calculator, hundreds grid, clock, coins, objects to count, etc.
We've had so many magical moments this year where a student solves a problem independently for the first time. As a teacher, it is so reinforcing to me to watch students experience success and know what I'm doing is working. I think I will need to take some time [this summer] to reflect on what we accomplished and what can be improved for the next school year. How many of the Essential Elements did I end up covering? What activities can I design that incorporate even more exposure to other math concepts?

Enhancing Mathematics Instruction for Students With Learning Difficulties

Are you or someone you know interested in learning more about the Enhancing Math course? If so, we will be holding a one-day workshop at the Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM) Annual Conference in Grand Rapids on Tuesday, July 30.  We will highlight parts of the three-day course to help people get started with some accessibility strategies and to preview the course for those interested in learning more. If you would like to be a part of this learning, consider signing up for the MCTM workshop and join us!

Delta Math

With the support of (Mi)2 and the Ottawa Area intermediate school district (ISD), implementation support for Delta Math is available to schools during the 2019-2020 school year at no cost. 
Professional learning opportunities may include the following:

  • Information sharing for schools interested to learn more about Delta Math’s evidence-based resources and recommendations.
  • Implementation training for schools new to Delta Math and newly hired staff from schools currently using Delta Math. “Veteran” instructional leaders are welcome to join us for a “refresher” opportunity.
  • Tier 2 and Tier 3 instruction support for math interventionists and teachers to explore Delta Math intervention lessons with the primary focus on the visual representations used during the Concrete Representational Abstract (C-R-A) instructional approach.

If you would like to learn more about Delta Math or schedule an implementation support for your school or district, please contact Mike Klavon at

Alt+Shift Update: Summer Retreat

Nineteen Alt+Shift/(Mi)2 teams attended this year’s summer retreat. They spent three days in Traverse City sharing their work from the past year, identifying their present barriers, turning dynamic knowledge into static knowledge, and developing their future implementation plan for the 2019-2020 school year. Teams had time to collaborate with sites who are implementing the same practices as well as meet educators taking part in different Alt+Shift professional learning opportunities such as Assistive Technology Journey, Emergent Literacy, Foundations of Communication, Accessible Materials Made Right, and Pragmatic Organization Dynamic Display books.
Based on feedback from the event, the teams:

  • Created and/or adjusted plans for next year.
  • Reflected and engaged in much needed work time with their teams.
  • Regained momentum for the work.
When asked what new information teams learned that was particularly helpful, attendees mentioned:
  • A framework for addressing change at the individual level called the ADKAR that was introduced on Day 2 of the retreat.
  • New information from colleagues both on their teams and teams from around the state.
  • The pace of implementation at other sites and how that compared to their own experiences.
  • Better understanding of their own progress throughout the past year.
  • How to organize thoughts and engage in implementation planning.
When thinking ahead to next year, teams are particularly excited about:
  • Increasing staff knowledge and capacity to implement new practices.
  • Expanding efforts to new groups of students.
  • Expanding efforts to new buildings.
  • Energizing staff around a mutual goal.
  • Training new staff.
  • Working together as a team to further goal-setting and execute plans.
  • Having a specific plan to “hit the ground running” with in the fall.

Educator’s Resource

The Erikson Institute: Early Math Collaborative is an online resource for teachers teaching the early levels of mathematics. Their mission is to develop teachers’ understanding of math concepts and how to develop them so that they can foster a deeper learning experience with students. There are videos, online learning modules, publications, an idea library, and more. If you are teaching the early stages of mathematics, this could be a great resource for you and your colleagues.

Upcoming Alt+Shift Events

Teaching Movements for Communication
July 15-19, 2019
Wesley School in Muskegon
*Alt+Shift has 25 seats and there was an application process for those seats

Enhancing Mathematics Instruction for Students With Learning Difficulties Overview
MCTM Pre-conference workshop
July 30, 2019
Grand Rapids, MI

2-Day Introduction to Pragmatic Organization Dynamic DIsplay (PODD)
August 7-8, 2019
Clinton County Regional Educational Service Agency (RESA)
St. Johns, MI 

Emergent Literacy Instruction for Students with Significant Disabilities and Complex Communication Needs
October 1-2, 2019
Clinton County RESA
St. Johns, MI

Math Around Michigan

Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM) Annual Conference
The 70th Annual MCTM Institute and Conference will return to the Eberhard Center at the downtown campus of Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, MI July 30 - August 1, 2019. The Institutes begin on Tuesday, July 30, 2019, with the two-day conference following on Wednesday and Thursday, July 31 - August 1, 2019.
Check out the schedule of the Institute sessions. You can also look at the institute conference sessions to see what is offered and start marking sessions you are interested in. Lodging information and discounted pricing is available to conference goers as well.

Wayne and Washtenaw Counties Math Teachers’ Circle (WWCMTC) 2019-2020
The program is aimed at all math teachers working in Wayne and Washtenaw Counties. We have participants ranging from young 5’s instructors all the way through advanced placement (AP) calculus. The only requirement is that you enjoy working on challenging, interesting math problems with other teachers and mathematicians. To see a schedule of the meetings, visit their program information page. To guarantee your spot, apply for the math circle by July 29, 2019

Differentiating in Mathematics Classrooms: A Connected Math Project (CMP) Workshop
This workshop is designed around sharing ideas and experiences to help us learn from each other. The workshop leaders will guide you through what it’s like to teach, experience, and learn in a CMP classroom. We encourage those who work with special populations to attend in teams. Discussions will focus on how you can use the curriculum materials to attend to individual learning, strategies, multiple entry points, mathematical practices, differentiation, and best practices. For more information, please visit the Differentiating in Mathematics Classroom Workshop page.

Computer Science Fundamentals (K-5th) **NO REGISTRATION COST**
Computer Science (CS) Fundamentals is a single day comprehensive professional learning opportunity to help educators implement computer science lessons and activities with elementary students. Course includes curriculum materials, lunch, online resources, and online management tutorials. State Continuing Education Clock Hours (SCECHs) for all workshops will be available pending approval.
All elementary educators are encouraged to attend. The lessons in CS Fundamentals are presented with the understanding that many teachers may not have previous computer science training. The resources provided will support educators in implementing the lessons and encourages educators to learn along with their students.
There are several locations across the state with varying dates for this one day workshop. Find locations on the MI-CODING K-5 webpage. For more information on the course, check out the Computer Science Fundamentals flyer.

Michigan TeacherCon 2019
Provided by an Official Regional Partner
NO REGISTRATION COST - Application required
AP Computer Science Principles and Computer Science Discoveries
This is comprehensive professional learning for middle and high school teachers to provide an introductory level course for AP Computer Science Principles and Computer Science Discoveries. Teachers will be part of a state-wide cohort of educators and will be provided course information, pedagogy, teaching strategies, and online management tutorials. Participants are expected to teach the course in the 2019-2020 school year. SCECHs for all workshops will be available pending approval.
Summer Dates & Locations
Option #1 - Statewide TeacherCon
July 28 - Aug 2, 2019 at the JW Marriott in Grand Rapids, MI
Includes: Hotel room, breakfast, lunch, and materials
Option #2 - Commuter Workshop
July 8-12, 2019 at Macomb ISD in Clinton Township
Includes: Lunch and materials
For more information, please visit the MI-CODING website or see the Computer Science Principles and Discovery flyer for details. 

Illustrative Math Training
North Muskegon Public Schools is hosting a two-day Illustrative Math kick-off training for teachers looking to implement a curriculum based on Illustrative Math at the middle and high school levels. Email Jonathan Allen at to register. 
When: August 13 and 14, 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Where: North Muskegon Public Schools, 1600 Mills Avenue, North Muskegon
Cost: $200 per participant, includes lunch each day

Building Thinking Classrooms for Co-Teaching
Building Thinking Classrooms (BTC) is the result of more than ten years of research by Dr. Peter Liljedahl. Join us to experience high leverage practices that promote problem solving, questioning, and thinking along with accessible routines and grouping protocols that will increase opportunities for diverse learners. A local middle school teacher will share her implementation story. Secondary general and special education math teachers are welcome and encouraged to attend with building or district colleagues.  Ongoing access to free resources via miPLACE will be provided.

Registration is now open for August 16 and December 18 in Oakland County (open to out of county participants).  

Time(s): 8:30AM-3:30PM
Location: Oakland Schools, 2111 Pontiac Lake Rd., Waterford 48328
Cost: $15.00 Oakland County/$90.00 Out of County


Math In Action: Save the Date and Call for Presenters
Math in Action will be held on Grand Valley State University’s Allendale Campus on Saturday, February 22, 2020 from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Download and share the Math in Action event flyer.
What is Math in Action? Our conference presents lively and informative discussions of current issues in mathematics education while providing an opportunity for practicing Pre-K to 12 teachers, prospective teachers, curriculum directors, and college and university faculty to share ideas, concerns, and resources. We include a keynote and six hour-long sessions with multiple interactive presentations in each session.
2020 Keynote Speaker: Ilana Horn, professor of Mathematics Education at Vanderbilt University and author of Motivated: Supporting Students to Share Mathematical Ideas.
Call for Presenters: We welcome presentation proposals from everyone engaged in improving mathematics teaching and learning. Past presenters have ranged from early-career, first-time speakers, to nationally recognized experts. What do you have to share with our community?
Learn more and submit your proposal at the Math in Action event page. Proposal deadline is October 1, 2019.

(Mi)2 Resources


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(Mi)2 Partner Organizations


Detroit Area Council of Teachers of Mathematics (DACTM)

Detroit Area Council of Teachers of Mathematics logo
The Detroit Area Council of Teachers of Mathematics (DACTM) proactively supports Michigan math educators’ continued professional growth.

Michigan Council for Exceptional Children (MCEC)

logo for Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics
The Michigan Council for Exceptional Children (MCEC) is part of a national community of educators who are the voice and vision of special and gifted education.

Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM)

logo for Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics
The Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM) is the professional organization for Michigan mathematics educators at any grade level, pre-K through college.


Michigan Math and Science Leadership Network (MMSLN)

Michigan Math and Science Center Network logo
The Michigan Mathematics and Science Leadership Network (MMSLN) collaborates with partners across the state to improve math and science teaching.

Alt+Shift, encompassing Michigan's Integrated Mathematics Initiative, is an Individuals with Disabilities Education Act Grant Funded Initiative out of the Michigan Department of Education, Office of Special Education.
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