Teacher Circle Online Workshop

by Spencer Bowen

MTC Network Virtual Summer Workshop

This July, the Math Teachers’ Circle Network and AIM hosted a virtual workshop to offer free professional development and online experience to K-12 teachers throughout the nation. 

Teachers participating in the "Acting Out Mathematics" Session with Dr. Hortensia Soto.

Over 250 teachers participated in the workshop, attending from all around the US as well as internationally. Each day included a full menu of sessions led by teachers and leaders of the Math Teacher Circle community. Attendees would sign up for the sessions that felt applicable to them and were welcome to jump in and out of sessions to better fit into their schedule.


Each day included a full menu of sessions focused on mathematical topics like The Game of Life and Perfect Rulers. Similarly to in-person Math Teachers’ Circle sessions, participants would alternate between listening to facilitators present material in webinar-style fashion to experiencing the mathematics themselves by working together in small-group breakout tables. Additionally, each day we hosted a “Teachers’ Lounge” seminar, with topics ranging from interactive online teaching to equity in mathematics education. The workshop also offered daily opportunities to build community amongst teachers, including morning Zumba  and a Social Circle in the afternoon during which teachers played games like Estimathon and Math Jeopardy. Other highlights included a special screening of the documentary Navajo Math Circles (with a follow-up Q&A with filmmaker George Csicsery and project founder Tatiana Shubin) and a closing talk on Pile Splitting by Global Math Project founder James Tanton. 

 The workshop evolved from a series of Math Teachers’ Circle Network Online sessions organized this past spring. Several of the presenters in that series, representing multiple Math Teachers’ Circles in three states, reached out to AIM with the idea of organizing a week-long experience in order to better support teachers facing the likelihood of online teaching this fall semester. Several of these organizers hosted a session solely dedicated to online teaching which had over a hundred participants. 

AIM and the Math Teachers’ Circle Network have been using the feedback from this workshop to prepare for the fall semester, when we will offer a regular schedule of online programming to help teachers and families find joyful math experiences. This will be a part of the Math Communities effort and can be found at MathCommunities.org. Additionally, all of the workshop sessions were recorded and are readily available to those in need of ideas for online teaching! These videos and a recap of the workshop can be found at https://mathcommunities.org/teachers-online-workshop/.

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