MATH 575: Mathematics in the Middle School Classroom

Prerequisites & Bulletin Description

Course Objectives

This course has two main objectives: as the first of three courses in a series that lead to a supplemental credential for teaching mathematics in middle school and as a way for current middle school teachers to improve their understanding of the mathematics they teach. The course focuses on two of the major strands in the middle school curriculum: 

  • Geometry and measurement
  • Algebraic thinking
  • Other aspects of mathematics, including problem solving and reasoning, play an important part as well. In particular, students will be expected to write clear explanations of much of their work, and the course will focus on ideas and understanding rather than on mechanical procedures

Evaluation of Students

Students are graded on the their ability to write clear explanations and descriptions and to solve problems in the content area of the course. Their grade will be based on weekly problem sets, an in-class or take-home examination and a final examination. 

Course Outline

Topics & Length
Topics Number of Weeks
Area and the Pythagorean theorem
Similarity and angles
Volume and surface area
Use of variables to describe different types of patterns
Role of distributive law in equivalent equations
Graphs and their relations to tables, equations in symbolic form and real world situations. Also the use of graphing calculators.
A study of linear equations and the role of slope. 3

Textbooks & Software

None. There will be handouts in class

Submitted by: Eric Hsu and Diane Resek 
Date: April 29, 2003