COMET • Vol. 4, No. 25 – 6 October 2003


(1) California Learning Resource Network


The California Learning Resource Network (CLRN) provides educators with a “one-stop” resource for critical information needed for the selection of supplemental electronic learning resources aligned to the State Board of Education academic content standards and linked to model lesson plans utilizing technology…

CLRN Objectives:

*  Identify and review supplemental electronic learning resources such as software, video, and Internet resources.

*  Identify learning units or lessons aligned to resources and the state academic content standards.

*  Maintain an interactive web site to provide: information about electronic learning resources through an online searchable database, links to standards based online lessons and to state education technology projects and resources.

CLRN Review Sites:

Stanislaus County Office of Education serves as LEA for the California Learning Resource Network with Bridget Foster directing the project. CLRN partners with the following county offices of education to review electronic learning resources: Butte County Office of Education, Humboldt County Office of Education, Kern County Office of Education, Kings County Office of Education, and San Diego County Superintendent of Schools.


Go to for a link to the California mathematics content standards and an annotated listing of recently-reviewed materials.

The CLRN Web Information Links (WIL) database ( ) is a collection of free primary source, secondary source, and reference web sites that are accessible though a standards-based browse function or a search function.  To view the mathematics links (to date, 235 are available), visit

CLRN’s Lesson Planner Wizard ( will guide teachers step-by-step through the creation of a lesson plan that meets the California standards and automatically finds electronic learning resources for the lesson.

(2) Presidential Awards For Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching

Source: Vance Mills, California PAEMST Mathematics Coordinator for Elementary Teachers

The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) program was established in 1983 by the White House and is sponsored by the National Science Foundation.  The program identifies outstanding mathematics and science teachers, kindergarten through grade twelve, in each state and the four U.S. jurisdictions.  These teachers will serve as models for their colleagues and will be leaders in the improvement of science and mathematics education. This prestigious award is open to public and private school teachers with a minimum of five years teaching experience.

The rewards include:

– A recognition ceremony at the California State Board of Education with luncheon following the meeting

– A stipend of $500 from state CMC and an additional stipend of $500 from the CMC section affiliate

– A special citation signed by the President of the United States

– Assumption of a national leadership role in the improvement of science and mathematics education

– A $10,000 cash award from the National Science Foundation and gifts from donors

– A paid trip for two to Washington, D.C., in March to attend recognition events, including an award ceremony, meetings with leaders in government and education, sessions to share ideas and teaching experiences, and receptions and banquets to honor recipients

The competition alternates each year between teachers of grades K-6 and teachers of grades 7-12. Teachers of grades K-6 will be eligible for the Presidential Awards in 2004.

Teachers applying for the 2004 PAEMST must be nominated.  Anyone (e.g., principals, teachers, students, and other members of the public) may nominate a teacher.  Self-nominations will not be accepted.  The 2004 nomination and application forms may be downloaded from the national Web site:

Teachers must submit their completed 2004 application packets by May 1, 2004 to the PAEMST state mathematics coordinator: Vance Mills – 7085 Wandermere Dr. – San Diego, CA 92119  — (619) 463-3326 —


(1)  NCTM Hosts Research Catalyst Conference

Source:  National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

[This article will appear in the November issue of the NCTM News Bulletin.  Our thanks to NCTM for permission to distribute it via COMET in advance of publication.]

A diverse group of nearly 100 researchers gathered in Reston, Virginia on September11-13 to discuss and frame research questions related to the impact of standards in mathematics education.  The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) organized and hosted the conference, which was funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation and NCTM.

The goals of the conference were to:

= Improve pre-KÆ12 mathematics teaching and learning by generating and catalyzing coordinated research about key questions related to the impact, implementation and influence of standards and related assessments, instructional materials, and teacher education initiatives.

= Build and strengthen an interdisciplinary research community with capacity and interest to do research about important issues in mathematics teaching and learning as related to standards in mathematics education.

Speakers at the conference included Susan Sclafani, counselor to the U.S. Secretary of Education; Grover (Russ) Whitehurst, director of the Institute of Education Sciences of the U.S. Department of Education;  and Judith Ramaley, assistant director, National Science Foundation Directorate for Education and Human Resources.  A panel of international leaders in mathematics education, Dr. Mogens Niss, professor of mathematics and mathematics education, Roskilde University, Denmark; Dr. Anna Sfard, professor of mathematics, University of Haifa, Israel; and Dr. David Clarke, director, International Centre for Classroom Research, University of Melbourne, Australia, addressed the final plenary session.

The conference was structured as a working meeting, with each attendee assigned to one of the following eight working groups: assessment and student achievement; changing nature of schooling and school demographics; instructional materials and curriculum; local policy and community context; state and national policy; teaching and learning; teacher preparation; and teacher quality and professional development.  The conferenceÍs 80 selected attendees were chosen based on their research credentials and capacity to conduct research in the future.  Others attending by special invitation were from Washington agencies, other organizations, and NCTM leadership.

NCTM President Johnny W. Lott said, “The Research Catalyst Conference provided a forum for novice researchers to interact with experienced ones in a free exchange of ideas.  Because research informs most of the CouncilÍs activities, we hope that the conversations initiated in the research community here will lead to a productive research agenda in mathematics education for the future.”

The Council will publish proceedings from the conference in 2004.  The Catalyst Conference will also be the subject of three sessions at the Research Presession on April 19-21 in Philadelphia, immediately preceding the NCTM Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, April 21-24.

More information on the NCTM Catalyst Conference, including presentations from panelist speakers, is at

(2) NSF Directs $216.3M Toward Math, Science Education Improvement (Press release: 2 October 2003)

Source:  National Science Foundation

URL (Press release): m

URL (MSP Program):

On October 2, the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced the award of $216.3 million in funding for the second year of its innovative Math and Science Partnerships (MSP) to improve mathematics and science education in United States and Puerto Rico schools.

Math and Science Partnerships grants unite elementary and secondary teachers and administrators with collegiate science, technology, engineering and mathematics faculty and representatives from stakeholder institutions. The partnerships focus on enhancing the quality, quantity and diversity of science and mathematics teachers, raising student achievement and offering challenging curricula at all grade levels.

“The Math and Science Partnerships are about reinvigorating mathematics and science instruction and strengthening curriculum across the United States,” said Dr. Judith A. Ramaley, who leads NSF’s Directorate for Education and Human Resources. “These awards are an investment in the talent pool of the nation’s future scientists, engineers and mathematicians.”

The awards will directly impact at least 2.85 million students nationwide and in Puerto Rico who learn in urban, rural, suburban and tribal nation schools.

This year’s MSP funding comes in four forms: (a) comprehensive awards, (b) targeted awards, (c) research, evaluation and technical assistance awards, and (d) a Prototype Institute Partnership award.

The comprehensive awards specifically marry institutions of higher education and stakeholder organizations with elementary and secondary schools to continuously improve student achievement from the earliest grades through 12th grade.

Targeted awards are provided to improve achievement in a specific grade range or disciplinary emphasis in mathematics or the sciences.

Research, evaluation and technical assistance awards are for a broad range of research and development efforts that support the work of the partnerships, including assessment of teacher knowledge of mathematics and science.

This year’s single Prototype Institute Partnership award places emphasis on improving middle and high school mathematics by emphasizing the development of school-based intellectual leaders and master teachers.

Tables containing information about this year’s MSP recipients are available on the Web site above. The names of the Principal Investigators and their affiliations are listed below:

MSP Comprehensive Awards

(1) Bunt, Nancy R. — Allegheny Intermediate Unit

(2) Kettlewell, Jan — University System of Georgia

(3) Ferrini-Mundy, Joan — Michigan State University

(4) Arce, Josefina — University of Puerto Rico at Rio Piedras

(5) Huinker, DeAnn M. — University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

MSP Targeted Awards

(1) Martin, W. Gary — Auburn University

(2) Stevens, Glenn H. — Boston University

(3) Burghardt, David M. — Hofstra University

(4) Merlino, F. Joseph — LaSalle University

(5) Parravano, Carlo — Merck Institute for Science Education

(6) Mullin, Kurt M. — Palo Alto Unified School District

(7) Nelson, George D. — Western Washington University

MSP Prototype Institute Partnership Award

Griffiths, Phillip — Institute For Advance Study

MSP Research, Evaluation and Technical Assistance Awards Æ FY 2003

(1) Nelson, Barbara S. — Educational Development Center

(2) Kleinman, Glenn M. — Education Development Center

(3) Smith, Patrick S. — Horizon Research, Inc.

(4) Falk, Joni — TERC, Inc.

(5) Maehr, Martin L. — University of Michigan

(6) Hill, Heather C. — University of Michigan

(7) Spillane, James — Northwestern University

(8) Britton, Edward D. — WestEd

(9) Jones, Lee — The College Board

(10) Elliott, Stuart — National Academy of Sciences

(3) “Powers of Ten Day [October 10]” by Terese Herrera

Source: Eisenhower National Clearinghouse


This article provides some history of our base ten system, as well as a number of activities and links that teachers can use to design lessons for this Friday, 10/10.