Tucson Math Teachers' Circle

About this program

All middle school and high school mathematics teachers who are interested in exploring engaging, accessible topics in mathematics and who strive to incorporate a problem solving approach in their classrooms are encouraged to participate in the Tucson Teachers' Circle.

Participants gain a variety of resources, membership in a dynamic community of mathematics educators, and a renewed sense of appreciation for the fascinating world of mathematics. Participation is free of charge thanks to the support of the Institute for Mathematics and Education (IM&E) , the University of Arizona Foundation, and generous private donors. Please contact us if you would like to support the Teachers' Circle. Click here for a copy of our brochure.

Session Structure

Teachers and university faculty members gather at the University of Arizona (usually in the Gould Simpson Building or the Mathematics Building, depending on the group size and equipment needs)from 5:30–8:00 PM one Tuesday evening per month to participate in problem solving related to the night's theme. Rich mathematical discussions ensue as teachers explore new ideas.

Participants enjoy a catered dinner and have opportunities to share classroom experiences, best practices, and challenges.

Teachers earn recertification credits for their involvement.

Historical Roots

Math Circles for students have existed for decades in Eastern Europe. A variation also exists in China. They were created to provide challenging problems for high-achieving mathematics students and also to expose these students to topics not covered in the standard school curriculum. These sessions stimulated interest in mathematics and helped these students to compete in various mathematics competitions.

In recent years, Math Circles for students were introduced in Berkeley, California and also in the San Francisco Bay Area. There is currently a Math Circle operating here at the University of Arizona.

Some dedicated math folk in the Bay Area started the first Math Teachers' Circle at the American Institute of Mathematics in 2006. It was so successful that a grant was created to spread the ideas. The American Institute of Mathematics continues to support the training of new teams to create Teachers' Circles throughout the country, and to support them with resources including this useful website.

Click here to see where other Teachers' Circles exist in the United States.

2011/2012 Tucson Math Teachers' Circle Events

Middle School Teachers' Circles

  • Thursday, September 8

    Brie Finegold and Priya Prasad
    Twists and Turns in Mathematics - The Moebius Strip and its cousins

  • Tuesday, October 11

    Nate Carlson
    Pascal's Triangle: A Voyage of Mathematical Discovery

  • Thursday, November 10

    Rohit Thomas
    The Euler characteristic: Geometry by Counting

  • Saturday, January 21

    MEAD Conference

  • Thursday, February 9

    Carrie Wright
    Graph Theory to the Rescue!

  • Thursday, March 8

    Priya Prasad
    Ancient Number Systems

  • Thursday, April 12

    Silvia Saccon

    High School Teachers' Circle

  • Thursday, September 22

    Fred Stevenson
    Five Mathematical Problems You Can Try on the Back of a Napkin

  • Tuesday, October 13

    W. Steven Rosenthal
    Mathematics is in the Cards

  • Thursday, November 17

    Carrie Wright
    Graph Theory to the Rescue!

  • Thursday, February 16

    Cody Patterson
    Going The Distance: How to Do Algebra in Geometric Settings

  • Thursday, March 15

    Josh Tabor
    Using Tools of Statistics to Solve the World's problems

  • Thursday, April 19

    Ginny Bohme & Carrie Wright
    Exploring Some Favorite Problems

  • Past Sessions

    Click here to browse sessions from 2007-2010.

    Contact Us

    To learn more about the circle and inquire about joining, send an email to

    Teachers' Circle Dates for 2013/2014 TBD Typically events are held 5:30-8:00 PM.

    Tucson Math Teachers' Circle brochure