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Taking Stock: MTE's Contribution to Building a Knowledge Base for the Practice of Mathematics Teacher Education

Kristen Bieda

When you link to to learn about writing a manuscript for publication in Mathematics Teacher Educator (MTE), one aspect of the call for manuscripts that likely stands out is the importance of informing the practice of mathematics teacher education. This directive in the call raises questions such as What is meant by “practice” in the MTE call, considering Lampert's (2010) unpacking of the various ways scholars use this term when talking about teaching? Why do we need work that speaks to the practice of mathematics teacher education? How is mathematics teacher education a practice? Over a decade ago, scholars fervently debated whether teaching, more broadly, is a practice (see Noddings, 2003) and, certainly, the issue is not yet settled. Meanwhile, the demand facing mathematics teacher educators to better educate teachers means more support is needed for those doing the work; mathematics teacher educators continue to face increasing pressure to prepare teachers to engage in more “ambitious teaching” (Newmann & Associates, 1996) than what was expected nearly three decades ago.

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Enacting Proof-Related Tasks in Middle School Mathematics: Challenges and Opportunities

Kristen N. Bieda

Discussions about school mathematics often address the importance of reasoning and proving for building students' understanding of mathematics. However, there is little research examining how teachers enact tasks designed to engage students in justifying and proving in the classroom. This article presents results of a study investigating the processes and outcomes of implementing proof-related tasks in the classroom. Data collection consisted of observations of 7 middle school classrooms during implementation of proof-related tasks—tasks providing opportunities for students to produce generalizations, conjectures, or proofs—in the Connected Mathematics Project (CMP) curriculum by teachers experienced in using the materials. The findings suggest that students' experiences with such tasks are insufficient for developing an understanding of what constitutes valid mathematical justification.

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The Whole Is the Sum of Its Parts

Kristen N. Bieda

Scenarios of students using manipulatives to explore and justify mathematical ideas show how they are poised to generate effective proofs.

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Filling a “Void”: The Mathematical Quality in Planning Protocol for Mathematics Teacher Educators

Kevin Voogt and Kristen Bieda

This article explores one novice mathematics teacher educator’s initial use of the Mathematical Quality in Planning Protocol, an innovative tool that was developed to assist in providing feedback on the mathematical quality of novice mathematics teachers’ lesson plans. The protocol was devised to help mathematics teacher educators bridge the gap between prospective teachers’ mathematical content knowledge and their mathematical content knowledge for teaching. Results of our analysis on an initial use of the protocol point to its potential as a tool to help mathematics teacher educators direct their feedback from being overly focused on the pedagogical aspects of the lesson (e.g., timing, planned activities) to the mathematical content prospective teachers are attempting to teach (e.g., anticipated student solutions, problem-solving strategies).

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Informing Practice: Examples as Tools for Constructing Justifications

research matters for teachers

Kristen N. Bieda and Jerilynn Lepak

Research explores how to help students build from, instead of building with, examples when justifying mathematical ideas.

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Investigating Problem-Solving Perseverance Using Lesson Study

Kristen N. Bieda and Craig Huhn

Middle and high school mathematics teachers share what they learned about supporting students by conducting a series of three lesson studies.

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So You Want to Be an MTE Author? A Tool for Writing Your Next MTE Manuscript

Edited by Sandra Crespo and Kristen Bieda

When describing MTE, we often hear things like, “It is a practitioner journal,” “It is not like JRME,” and “It is more rigorous than MT, MTMS, or TCM journals.” All these things are true but do not quite capture what it is that makes MTE a journal dedicated to growing the knowledge base of mathematics teacher educators. What this says is that it is easier to state what MTE is not, and much more difficult to provide a clear-cut description of what the journal publishes. MTE is a journal attempting to do something that no other journal, not even those in other disciplines, has done. Although it may be convenient to try to understand the journal and the kinds of articles it publishes by comparing it with other journals we are familiar with, these comparisons ultimately fall short of providing the support needed to generate a manuscript that is a good “fit” for MTE. In this editorial, we offer a tool that could help prospective authors conceptualize and write manuscripts for this journal.

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What's Your Evidence? Making Evidence-Based Claims and Why This Matters

Kristen Bieda and Sandra Crespo

These are a sampling of the kinds of headlines that reach our email in-boxes on a weekly basis. The widespread use of Twitter (#iteachmath) and blogs (#mtbos) brings prospective and in-service teachers unprecedented access to knowledge and guidance that can inform teaching, but the sheer volume of information available comes at a cost. The cost is that authors feel that they have to entice readers with catchier titles and bolder claims, a phenomenon that is referred to in the popular media as clickbait. As we are learning from our current political climate, our U.S. culture may be becoming increasingly entranced with compelling headlines and less engaged with the evidence provided to support those headlines.

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Celebrating 7 Years and Counting! Continuing to Grow Our MTE Community

Sandra Crespo and Kristen Bieda

This editorial closes our 4-year tenure as editors of the MTE journal. Although time has surely flown, we have much to celebrate and to reflect on as we bid farewell to our editorial office. We have had the privilege and responsibility to continue the legacy of the founding editors (Peg Smith and Melissa Boston) and develop our vision for increasing the visibility and impact of this journal as well as to grow the diversity of perspectives, authors, and reviewers of the journal. With this editorial, we celebrate our journey, highlighting our top three accomplishments, and then outline top priorities for the journal as it moves forward under the editorship of the new incoming editors.

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Justification as an Equity Practice

Kristen N. Bieda and Megan Staples

This article highlights the role of students' engagement in mathematical justification in supporting classrooms that provide equitable access to mathematics and develop students' agency for doing mathematics.