Monday, January 14, 2019

VCTM January 2019 eNewsletter

President’s Message

Happy New Year! We are excited about all that 2019 will bring!

This year the Vermont Council of Teachers of Mathematics is looking forward to...
  • Math Morsels events held around the state this Spring, providing the space and time for teachers to talk about discourse in the math classroom.
  • Our Annual Statewide Math Fair on April 6th at UVM in April which will include a visit by Lieutenant Governor David Zuckerman. 
  • Our Annual VCTM Conference in October featuring a look at the "M" in STEM. Watch for a "Call for Presenters" soon.

We also want to acknowledge the dedication of our VCTM Board in 2018. It is their vision, passion, and focus on students that make our organization function. We have worked with an awesome group of people this year.

We also welcomed four new VCTM Board members at the end of the year. We are happy to have Emily Greaves representing the Danville area, Kaaren Meyer representing the Stowe area, and Ali Kennedy and Patty Ryan representing the Proctor area.

We are grateful to live in a state that believes in the power of teaching, has an amazing wealth of expertise in math and best practices, and supports students from diverse backgrounds. We value our Vermont math teachers and all you do for our students. Thank you, and best wishes in this new year.

Lara White and Sue Abrams
VCTM Co-Presidents

In this edition of the VCTM eNewsletter, you will find:
  • President’s Message (above)
  • Important Upcoming Dates for Math Educators and Students
  • Tell Your Students: NOW is the Time to Register for the 2019 VCTM Statewide Math Fair!
  • Tell Your Colleagues: Join us in Meaningful Conversation at VCTM’s Math Morsels this Spring!
  • Another Upcoming FREE(!) Workshop with the NH Impact Center @ PSU
  • Upcoming Professional Development from the Vermont Higher Education Collaborative
  • A Message & Invitation from our NY Counterparts: Limaçon 2019
  • Even More Reasons to Try the Expanding Horizons Program This School Year 
  • Recent Updates for VSMC’s Talent Search for VT Students
  • Tom Payeur, Math Educator, is the 2019 Vermont Teacher of the Year! 
  • A Plethora of Opportunities in 2019 for Vermont STEM Students!

Important Upcoming Dates for Math Educators & Students
Local state events denoted with *

February 6, 2019 NH Impact Center Workshop: Word Problems with Percents (Plymouth, NH) [event flyer]
March 11-12, 2019 Teaching Math for Everyone: Supporting All Learners Workshop (Montpelier, VT) [flyer]
March 15, 2019 Limaçon 2019 Conference (Old Westbury, NY) [event flyer]
March 30, 2019 Vermont STEM Fair (Northfield, VT)* [event webpage]
March-May, 2019 VCTM Math Morsels (Various Locations, TBA)
April 1-3, 2019 NCSM Annual Conference (San Diego, CA) [event webpage]
April 3-6, 2019 NCTM Annual Meeting & Exposition (San Diego, CA) [event webpage]
April 6, 2019 VCTM Statewide Math Fair (Burlington, VT)* [event flyer] [event webpage]
June 30 - July 3, 2019 New-Cubed Mathematics Conference (Albany, NY) [event flyer]
October, 2019 VCTM Annual Conference (Location TBA)*

Tell Your Students: NOW is the Time to Register for the 2019 Statewide Math Fair!
Burlington, VT - April 6, 2019

Looking for an accessible, authentic, alternative pathway to engage your students in learning mathematics? VCTM’s homegrown math fair is your solution. Allow your students to engage in their own investigation of mathematics in its most applied, pure, paradoxical and exciting forms. The Math Fair takes place April 6, 2019 on the University of Vermont campus in Burlington. Act fast as the registration deadline is…


Don’t wait! Register now. In the past two years we have capped our registration due to limited space to display and judge projects. This event is open to ALL Vermont students across all grade levels. It doesn’t take long to register through our convenient online registration form!

New Proficiency-based Scoring Criteria! The VCTM Math Fair Committee is pleased to offer, for the first-time ever, a proficiency scale & alignment template for our project scoring criteria. While this took longer in ‘R&D’ than expected, the final product has great potential to make the math fair even more accessible and meaningful for Vermont students and teachers collecting evidence towards proficiency-based graduation requirements. This document can be found on our event webpage but accessed directly here.  

We need volunteers! The VCTM Math Fair Committee would also like to make a call for volunteers. Whether you are a practicing or retired mathematics educator, preservice teacher, or come from a STEM background, we welcome you to join us as a judge of student work or simply an extra set of hands for set-up and break-down of this event. If you’re available and interested, we’d ask that you let us know you are coming by submitting a quick online form: 2019 Fair Volunteer Registration Form

Teachers & Parents! We hope you see that this is a worthwhile endeavor for your students but we recognize that it takes some planning to make it all possible. To take the hassle out of planning, the 2019 Math Fair Event Flyer contains all the need-to-knows on how to register, project criteria, eligibility and categories but you can find even more on the VCTM website, including a plethora of resources totally free and easily accessible to you! These include:
  • Project requirements and specifications
  • An extensive list of project topics
  • 2019 Proficiency Scale & Alignment Template
  • 2018 Judges Scoring Sheet (to be updated at a later date)
  • Day-of Event Logistics

Tell Your Colleagues: Join us in Meaningful Conversation at VCTM’s Math Morsels this Spring!

Throughout Vermont - March-May, 2019

Expect more information in the coming months in future announcements and the next edition of the eNewsletter, including dates and locations, but VCTM is nonetheless excited to once again offer Math Morsels in the Vermont educational community. An informal, free opportunity for professional learning, these social-professional events will take place in the various ‘zones’ around the state this spring. (Not sure about your zone? Check out our map here and take note of your zone representative(s)). Until you can save the date for your local event, share this with your colleagues and consider the value of local networking and collaborative learning in classroom practice.

Another Upcoming FREE(!) Workshop with the NH Impact Center @ PSU
Plymouth, NH - February 6, 2019

From Dr. Natalya Vinogradova at Plymouth State University:

Are you looking for math activities to engage all your students?
Consider the NH Impact Center workshop for grade 3 – 9 teachers.
"Word Problems with Percent" on February 6, 4:30-6:30 in Plymouth.
Participation is free!

Upcoming Professional Development from the Vermont Higher Education Collaborative
Montpelier, VT - March 11-12, 2019

Looking for professional learning in differentiated, inclusive practices? Consider this workshop from The Vermont Higher Education Collaborative: Teaching Math for Everyone: Supporting All Learners with Presenter John Tapper, Ph.D.

From the Vermont Higher Education Collaborative:

Audience: K-8 teachers, special educators, interventionists, and curriculum leaders

Overview/Outcomes: Every classroom has children who learn differently. Yet, most math classrooms approach learning as if everyone needed the same instruction and the same practice. For students whose needs are not met, this can have disastrous effects on their academic careers and on their futures.

Participants who attend this workshop will learn:
•    Why mathematics is so important for creating equity in schools
•    High leverage concepts to help focus math instruction
•    Critical components of lessons that help meet the needs of all learners
•    Methods of assessment that investigate student thinking and lead to effective instruction
•    How to create a Math Menu to differentiate instruction

The All Learners Network seeks to find pedagogies that make it possible for all students to be successful in mathematics regardless of their circumstances or abilities. This workshop is the result of the work of hundreds of teachers and coaches working to make math accessible to every learner. The techniques and materials made available in this course have been tested in classrooms in Vermont, Maine, and Maryland.

John Tapper is an Associate Professor of Elementary Education at St. Michael’s College and the Director of the All Learners Network. He has more than 30 years of experience as an elementary teacher, math coach, math education researcher, and author. He believes everyone can learn mathematics and take advantage of the opportunities it creates.

A Message & Invitation from our NY Counterparts: Limaçon 2019
Old Westbury, NY - March 15, 2019
From Francine Wisnewski & Ronni David of the LIMACON Publicity Committee:
Exciting news for teachers of all levels of mathematics!
The Long Island Math Conference will be held on Friday, March 15, 2019, at SUNY Old Westbury.  This year's theme is "Where does math live? Show me!" Mr. Ron Lancaster-Associate Professor at the University of Toronto will present the keynote. Mathematics consultant on the television show, Numb3rs.
50 workshops for Primary through College level math educators and preservice teachers.
Attached (here) please find the LIMACON program and registration information or you can follow this link for further information.
Feel free to email us with any questions.
Hope to see you there!

Even More Reasons to Try the Expanding Horizons Program This School Year

It is not too late to consider bringing college and university level mathematics into your classroom this school year through the Expanding Horizons program produced by the Vermont State Math Coalition. It’s simple and costs nothing! You’ve heard this before and now we have even more reason for you to give it a try.

An Exciting Announcement from John Devino of the VSMC:

2019 is off and running and midyear is fast approaching.  I realize that many of you feel pressured to cover the required curriculum given lost teaching time, and you feel there is no time to do anything “extra”.  However, I hope you will take the time to read the attached article by Professor Miller at the University of Louisville, (located here, it’s very  short), regarding the benefits of bringing someone into your classroom.
As you may know, the Vermont State Mathematics Coalition’s Expanding Horizons is available to you at no charge.  Most presenters are willing to modify their presentation given your curriculum and/or your students’ needs and interests.
New offerings just posted:  Check out David Hathaway’s “How GPS Works” and the geometry “hands-on activities” by Bjoern Muetzel from Dartmouth College (see below).  Professor Muetzel has worked will all levels of students, from elementary through high school.

"Reach out and touch space!"
Using tiles, geometric LEGOs, and 3D prints, we explore the fascinating world of tessellations in the plane, on the sphere, and even in the mysterious hyperbolic space. Additionally, we construct the five perfect polyhedra – the Platonic solids – and prove that there can only be those five. Suited for elementary or high school students.

"Build your own polyhedra"
Using geometiles, we explore how many symmetric polyhedra can be built by using only a single type of regular polygon. We will prove that there are only five such polyhedra – the Platonic solids. We then explore the Archimedean solids which we obtain when we relax our condition and allow several different regular polygons in our construction. These have been used by Johannes Kepler in the 16th century in his attempt to justify why the sun is the center of our solar system. Suited for high school students.

For further information, contact the EH Chair John Devino at or 802-863-5403.

Recent Updates for VSMC’s Talent Search for VT Students

Solutions and the list of top scorers have been posted for the Second Annual Talent Search of the Year for Vermont Students on the Vermont State Math Coalition website:

The third test is being written and will be posted online in the near future. Even if your students did not submit or event attempt solutions to the first two problem sets, they are still welcome to participate!

Tom Payeur, Math Educator, is the 2019 Vermont Teacher of the Year!
Burlington, VT - October 1, 2018

The Vermont Council of Teachers of Mathematics feels the need to honor Winooski Mathematics Educator Tom Payeur for being named the 2019 Vermont Teacher of the Year! We were fortunate to have Tom present at our 2017 Conference and value his leadership and impact in the Vermont educational community. If you want to follow Tom during his tenure this year, jump on twitter and follow @2019VTTOY or check out the blog he authors (here)!

For a full story of the announcements, check out what our local news organizations had to say about this exciting announcement from October 2018:

A Plethora of Opportunities in 2019 for Vermont STEM Students!
Throughout Vermont - February - Summer, 2019

From Laurel Butler with the Vermont Small Business Development Center (VtSBDC):

2019 Student Entrepreneurship Day - For High School/Career Tech Students - Feb 5
Montpelier – Capitol Plaza Hotel - Entrepreneurship crosses all disciplines - “Vermont Entrepreneurs…Creating Solutions”.
Governor to speak and present Entrepreneurship Proclamation; hear from young successful VT Entrepreneurs; fun, hands-on activity; awards for entrepreneurial visual media competition - FREE.
Contact: Laurel Butler-
Important - Student groups contact: Susan Ladd –

Bridge Building (STEM) Competition – and Crushing!

For High School - March 22 - and Middle School - April 4 – Vermont Tech College - Randolph Center Campus
Before event dates students build bridges out of Popsicle sticks – then judged on: aesthetics, design, presentation, load carrying capacity, and predicted failure point. No cost to enter, Free lunch and t-shirts - plus scholarship to top performers. For details: Contact: John Diebold -

Try a Major Day -  For High School/Career Tech Students – May 5Vermont Tech College -  Randolph Center Campus -  Designed to let students experience first-hand and “try-out” Vermont Tech’s program majors alongside current students and faculty, includes complimentary lunch. FREE Details available at: Contact: Cory Lussier –

GIV Entrepreneurship Institute - socially responsible - creating solutions
For students entering 10the - 12th grades - Governor’s Institutes of Vermont (GIV) - residential institute hosted & co-sponsored by Vermont Tech College - Randolph Center Campus - July 6 -12
An innovative, fun “hands-on” program - students learn to develop an “entrepreneurial mindset” and what it takes to create a business or be more successful in their career pathway and the workplace. Sliding scale tuition (some pay as little as $10 for entire week) – Option to earn 3 college credits using dual enrollment vouchers.  Contact: Laurel Butler -

Rosie’s Girls STEM Leadership Camp – residential camp for girls entering 9the-10th grades - July 7-11 – Vermont Tech College - Randolph Center Campus - A fun “hands-on” exploration into STEM (science, technology, engineering, math - plus some arts) career opportunities. Affordable– many scholarships Contact: Fianna Barrows –

Coder Camp for Girls - July 15 -19 – Vermont Tech College - Williston Campus - day camp
For girls entering 7th – 10th grades - An experiential coder camp where girls can translate their creativity into a computer program using SCRATCH and other software programs – many scholarships. students/camps/coder-camp-girls - Contact: Laurel Butler

Advanced Coder Camp – July 22-26 – Vermont Tech College - Williston Campus – day camp
For girls and boys entering 7th – 10th grades Campers with some programming background dive deeper into programming – developing simple Android applications using Java and xml – many scholarships. students/camps/advanced-coder-camp - Contact: Laurel Butler –

Computer Day Camp- Summer 2019 (stay tuned for dates) – Upper Valley/Randolph – day camp
Brand New- Vermont Tech Camp for girls and boys entering 7th – 10th grades focus: Coding & Web Design

CTE & ALL Secondary Teacher/Educator Professional Development­­­ Institute (teaching in any subject/area)
“The Entrepreneurial Mindset” Entrepreneurship/Business/Financials  - Oct 21 & 22, 2019- 15 hours – graduate credit available – Lake Morey Resort