Keith Adolphson, Eastern Washington University
Keith is an associate professor of mathematics education in the Mathematics Department at Eastern Washington University. He teaches undergraduate mathematics content and methods courses for future K-8 teachers, as well as, graduate courses for the department’s Teaching K-9 Mathematics MA program for certified teachers. A retired naval flight officer and former middle school mathematics and technology education teacher, his life experiences support his view that students need to understand the mathematics they are expected to learn and apply. Keith’s interests include developing preservice and in-service teachers’ understanding of mathematics and teaching mathematics, discourse and understanding, and applications of technology in the teaching and learning of mathematics. He is currently the project director for Eastern’s Robert Noyce Scholarship program; a $1.5 million NSF funded program seeking to increase the number science, technology, engineering and mathematics majors who chose to become mathematics and science teachers.
Kimberly Vincent, Washington State University
There are two major influences that impact how I do and teach mathematics. The first major influence was my father. Growing up in Maine it would be considered sacrilege not to play cribbage. When I was five years old I began playing cribbage with my Dad. He taught me to look for patterns and to find shortcuts, when counting my points. He also challenged me to figure out why 19 was an impossible hand. He instilled a love of problem solving in the way he encouraged me to think. My students are a major influence on how I teach. When I was working on a PhD in mathematics I took notice of the drop in numbers of women from the first semester of calculus to the third semester of calculus. I switched to mathematics education upon completion of my coursework. Women’s attitudes toward mathematics gave me incredible insight and transformed how I teach mathematics. Teaching to memorize facts does not work for the majority of women/girls. Teaching for understanding gives them confidence, problem solving abilities and an appreciation of mathematics that rules did not give them. And by the way, understanding mathematics, rather than just memorizing it, actually helps the men/boys as well. I teach mathematics courses and methods of teaching for the Dept of Mathematics at Washington State University.
James King, University of Washington
Jim came to the UW Mathematics Department some decades ago as a mathematician with a research interest in algebraic geometry, but it was experiences teaching a geometry course for pre-service teachers that led him to another interest: working with K12 math teachers. For twenty years, he has been on the Steering Committee of the Park City Mathematics Institute, where he is one of the organizers of the Secondary School Teacher Program. He also is an organizer of Northwest Mathematics Interaction, a program that had provided a Summer Geometry Institute and other professional development for teachers on the UW campus each summer since 1995. He was the director of the Seattle site of the PD3 Math-Science Partnership project and has been a part of other work with local math teachers. Working with university and secondary colleagues in these projects has provided treasured lessons in math education. While he enjoys many flavors of math, he particularly enjoys sharing the exploration of classical geometry with modern dynamic software tools.
Debra Olson, Spokane Falls Community College
Ginger Warfield, University of Washington
Ginger Warfield has loved mathematics and people from the cradle, but it wasn’t until she finished her doctorate in Probability that she discovered the joys of combining those two loves. The resulting fascination has led to her teaching mathematics and/or the teaching of mathematics to children, undergraduates, graduate students, pre-service teachers, in-service teachers, and any neighbor who didn’t duck fast enough. It has also led her into the field of Mathematics Education in a number of ways — and her horizons are still expanding. She launched WaToToM on the theory that all of us working together can accomplish far more than each of us working separately, and is delighted to have had that theory validated.
For more details, see www.math.washington.edu/~warfield/
My love for mathematics really took form in high school when I learned Euclidean geometry. I was inspired by the idea that math is more than computation, and is in fact a creative process where from a few rules, whole universes could be formed. The source of this inspiration was an amazing, if unorthodox, teacher who knew that understanding meant more than memorization, and that an effective classroom was not necessarily an orderly one.
My love of geometry propelled me through the PhD program at the University of Washington, and it was while working as a graduate student that I became excited about being a teacher as well. Not only did I get to experience, first hand, the amazing feeling of helping somebody transition from not understanding to understanding, I also met Ginger, and her wisdom and guidance helped me appreciate the importance and subtlety of the art of teaching.
I have now been with the Mathematics Department at Seattle University since 2006 and I get to do what I love: teach math (including geometry!), teach future teachers, and work with great colleagues who care deeply about math and math education.