When anyone becomes a teacher, they know they are also a student for life. In the last few years as a middle school math teacher, I always found myself in a situation that required me to do some reading or learning about what I’m teaching and how I am suppose to teach. Teaching middle school math has not come as easily as Algebra has, but I know that by educating myself more, middle school math doesn’t have to be so intimidating.
I journeyed through my Masters courses while as a middle school math teacher, and I couldn’t be more happy about how it coincided. I learned at night while applying it during the day. I felt more confident and definitely more competent. A big part of my learning was taking more math or math related classes. I knew that if I had more knowledge, more higher level knowledge, I would feel more comfortable teaching it. Knowing more than what the teacher’s manual says is critical in secondary math.
In sponsorship of my education, the MCTM (Minnesota Council of Teachers of Mathematics) Foundation granted me a scholarship. The Arnie Culter Scholarship helped me get the education I sought after. MCTM showed me that what I value in myself as a teacher is something they value and something they want to support. Below you can find the information on how to apply for the scholarship. It is a journey worth going after especially when someone else is there to support you in becoming a better teacher.
The Cutler Scholarships are given semi-annually to MCTM members who teach mathematics in middle school and who submit applications by either the March 31 or October 31 deadlines. More information on the Cutler Scholarship and application materials are available at www.mctm.org (go to “Grants and Scholarships” or to “MCTM Foundation” links on the homepage).
The current awardee is Suzanne Horne, a 6th grade teacher, math coach and ACE (Architecture, Construction and Engineering) coordinator at St. Paul Humboldt. She has been awarded a $1200 Arnie Cutler Scholarship for Middle School Teachers. Suzanne has taken a course in statistics which helped her explore new ways of helping students and also to better analyze student data to better focus on student needs.
In a school setting where most students cannot afford graphing calculators, Suzanne found new ways to engage her students with data, formulas, and graphing using Excel. She was able to revisit how students learn content such as standard deviations, chi, chi squared and p-values by employing new teaching strategies.
Grateful for the financial support that lightened the tuition burden, Suzanne found she could better “focus on the most important aspect of teaching, my students.”