Center for the Mathematics Education of Latinos/as
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Overview

CEMELA's approach to teacher education aims to:

A unique feature of CEMELA is its focus on parental/family engagement in mathematics education. CEMELA's approach to its work with families aims to:

In the sections below we expand on CEMELA's approach to professional development, preservice teacher education, and the family/parental component.

Teacher Professional Development

Professional development focuses on the intellectual communities of teachers that work to transform and improve the mathematics learning of low-income Latino students through the (a) study of K-8 mathematics from an advanced standpoint, so as to broaden and deepen teachers' understanding of the content, (b) examination of K-8 mathematics curriculum, assessment, and pedagogy, informed by understandings of Latinos' language and culture, and (c) critical discussion of research on mathematics teaching and learning, language, and culture.

Center Faculty and Fellows, and Teacher Leaders collaborate to design and implement the professional development activities, which reflect the interplay of mathematics, language, and community/cultural knowledge:

Preservice Teacher Education

Through the design of CEMELA Modules, the Center incorporates research-based ideas from language and culture into existing mathematics content and pedagogy courses for preservice K-8 teachers. The CEMELA Modules build on cases of local Latino K-8 students learning in culturally, linguistically, and mathematically rich environments and reflect the current recommendations for mathematics teacher preparation. The Modules build on existing exemplary materials, but are adapted to reflect the Center's mission.

It is crucial that preservice teachers have extensive field experiences in classrooms with teachers who teach to the big ideas of mathematics while incorporating current knowledge and understandings about the mathematics teaching and learning of Latinos. "CEMELA schools" thus, are utilized extensively as K-8 field experience sites for the preservice programs at all four universities.

Family/Parental Component

Bringing together all interested parties (i.e. parents, school personnel, and students) is fundamental to CEMELA's holistic vision. CEMELA's work with parents and families builds on our previous projects (Funds of Knowledge for Teaching, Bridge, and MAPPS (Math and Parent Partnerships in the Southwest)). A core group of parents (Parent Leaders) take mathematics courses for parents and in turn then facilitate workshops for other parents in the different communities. Parent Leaders inform and participate in several other Center activities by taking part in the study groups and lesson study component and contributing to the CEMELA Modules. We plan to have parents and preservice teachers work together in the facilitation of mathematics experiences in the after-school programs already in place in the partnering schools