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Coaching through Focusing on Student Thinking

Why is it so crucial that coaches and teachers concentrate their interactions on students’ mathematical reasoning?

Imagine that you are a school-based mathematics coach whose goal is to support teachers in developing and refining their teaching so that students have opportunities to build identities as mathematical thinkers and engage deeply in the Common Core’s (CCSSI 2010) Standards for Mathematical Practice (SMP). As you walk into teachers’ classrooms to support them, you consider the following questions:

• Which developments will I look for as the lesson plays out?

• Which conversations might I have with teachers during or following the lesson?

• Which conversations do I want to have with teachers across a grade level?

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