Math Inquiry Institute gives teachers creative tools

Making math and science more visual and exciting is something several area teachers have in mind for the upcoming school year thanks to the creative new tools they learned during the 2012 Math Inquiry Institute at the University of Missouri–St. Louis this summer.

The institute, which was held for the second year at UMSL, ran June 18 through 22 and featured workshops, demonstrations and networking for kindergarten through 12th grade teachers. More than 50 teachers participated from various St. Louis-area school districts as well as those from Washington, Mo., and Edwardsville, Ill.

The College of Education at UMSL runs the institute, which was sponsored by MasterCard Worldwide and the Boeing Employee Community Fund. Helene Sherman, associate dean for undergraduate education at UMSL, and Randy Sommers, lecturer in education at UMSL, developed the program and run it together.

“This year’s institute was a great success,” Sommers said. “We want to help teachers learn more about the excitement of learning and teaching mathematics in ways that really engage students.”

The Common Core State Standards for mathematics and Missouri’s Grade Level Expectations provided the content and pedagogical framework for the institute. It concluded with small group presentations about the innovated ideas learned through the week.

“We will be having several evening programs in the fall for St. Louis area teachers,” Sommers said. “These workshops will focus on mathematics literacy and financial management education. All teachers will be welcome.”

For more information on the fall programs, email Sommers at


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