News from the Western 2 Region
Hope Bjerke, Western 2 Regional Director
Welcome back to another year of excitement and challenge. I hope your new school year has gotten off to a good start. It's my favorite time of year when temperatures become more bearable, trees start turning those rich amber colors, our gardens finally overflow with the produce we've dreamed about, and when we are lucky here in Northern California, we get that Indian Summer we all love.
I am busy, busy with the new school year. I will be coaching 25 middle and high school teachers in Shasta and Siskiyou Counties. Lesson Study begins the second week in September and I have 6 teams to work with this year. I am really excited about the opportunities I will have to help my teachers implement the Common Core in their classrooms. They are all on board this fall with full implementation and my high schools are all teaching the integrated pathway! What an exciting time for education.
This summer I traveled quite a bit. We had our NCSM Strategic Planning in Ann Arbor, Michigan and I got to attend the NCSM Summer Leadership Academy in Monrovia, California. It was wonderful to work with so many of you from our region at the Academy in Southern California. Then in August I finally got to attend the Oregon Math Leaders Conference in McMinnville. Oregon. We all stayed in the dorms at Linfield College (these were much better than any previous experiences I have had with college dorm rooms) and ate our meals in the dining hall. I was invited to arrive a day early to attend the Oregon Council of Teachers of Mathematics Board meeting where I made a presentation about Oregon becoming an affiliate of NCSM. The Board seemed very receptive to the idea and I hope they will vote to join at their next board meeting.
The Oregon Math Leaders Conference was a VERY positive experience for me. I was overjoyed to see so many younger teacher leaders sharing ideas and working together to solve problems. In many of the organizations to which I belong, we have had a big problem getting younger teachers to get involved, but Oregon has a very special thing going on in their leadership circle. I really liked how they had teacher leaders sharing in a panel discussion mode or doing a quick, 20-minute presentation of an idea they had tried in their classrooms. These situations seemed less threatening to a new participant and gave them an opportunity to step up and be heard.
We have quite a few opportunities for collaboration coming up in the next few months. Please check out the calendar for details. There is TOTOM in Bend, OR, in September, North West Math Conference in Belleview, WA, in October, CMC-South Math Conference in Palm Springs, CA, in November, and finally CMC-North Conference at Asilomar in December. AND... NCSM is having a Leadership Seminar in Las Vegas on October 23. We'd better get busy and get registered!