Supporting the Math Focus Project Through Enhanced Coaching Skills

The Math Focus Project is preparing to welcome the fifth Cohort of teachers this coming August.   Teachers who began the three-year journey in 2017 (Cohort 3) will be graduating, while those who started last summer (Cohort 4) will participate in their second year.  In all, more than three hundred fifty teachers and Consultants will be engaged in an intensive professional development activity in the first week of August.

The learning continues throughout the school year with participants putting into practice what they have been introduced to in the summer with the support of their local Consultant(s).  As part of the commitment to this ongoing project, each Board/Association devotes a minimum of two days in-service training each year.  Some Boards/Association have adopted additional means of supporting the teachers through the regular meetings of PLCs, for example.

LCEEQ offered a full-day workshop in mid-May to assist Consultants as they continue to support teachers in the various Cohorts and beyond.  Cheryl Cantin, Math Consultant at the Eastern Townships School Board, and a member of the Board of Directors of the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (NCSM) was instrumental in helping organize a session led by Sara Frisbie, both a classroom teacher and experienced teacher coach. The session addressed the essential question:  How can we become the agents of change and improve student achievement in mathematics through the vehicle of coaching?

The NCSM framework for Mathematics Education Leadership is focused on four principles:

  • Advocate for and expect high-quality, equitable mathematics teaching and learning for every student
  • Design and implement structures that support high-quality mathematics teaching and learning for every student
  • Empower and nurture a culture of productive professionalism
  • Monitor and act on evidence of student learning

Participants engaged in a variety of activities and discussions throughout the day designed to stimulate their thinking and model coaching practices that they can adapt in their own setting as they continue to support teachers in developing conceptual Mathematics classroom practices.