TRC Team

Why should I join the Teacher Research Corps? Every year, we ask Teacher Researchers why they decided to join the Teacher Research Corps. Many teachers come back year after year. We will let Teacher Researchers tell you, in their own words, why the Teacher Research Corps is worth your time. 

Collaborating and Sharing with Like-Minded Educators

“I have continued to participate in TRC year after year because of the way we collaborate and share perspectives with—and learn from—like-minded colleagues who want to do the hard work that it takes to make CPM work in their schools and classrooms.” 

“TRC has been the biggest game-changer for me as a math educator. Being able to collaborate with educators/leaders from around the country has kept me motivated to stay in the classroom and work to help middle schoolers find enjoyment in learning mathematics and the challenges it presents. It’s always so great to share classroom stories and get ideas from like-minded people who want to improve math education.”

Professional Learning with a Big Impact on Classroom Teaching

“I originally joined because I loved CPM materials and philosophy and wanted to learn more about the strategies I had been using and think of ways to make them better and more applicable in my classroom. I am here again because the last two years have been some of the best professional development and improvement I have experienced.”

“TRC has had a huge impact on my teaching because I don’t think I would have tried some of these strategies without it. Instead of not trying something because I thought it would be difficult to implement or not go over well, I use that now as a learning opportunity to make it better.”

Benefits Teachers and Students

“I think it’s easy for teachers’ growth to plateau at a certain point, and this pushes me to continually improve. Most of all I am here because this has had such a positive impact on students. They have grown as readers, writers, and reflective thinkers through my two years of research, and I want to continue to provide these opportunities to them.”

“This is my 7th year of TRC, and I love that each year my classroom and students benefit from the work I get to do with TRC. I appreciate the opportunity to work through ideas with teachers from across the country and value the perspective of the leadership team greatly. Thank you for the continued dedication to this program and keeping us moving forward.”

Encouragement Where and When You Need It

“TRC helps us change and move off ‘auto-pilot’ with our teaching. It re-energizes us to push ourselves to change.”

“As I end another year, it’s important to me to use the downtime offered in the summer to reflect upon my practice and see what worked and what didn’t. I am also looking for inspiration and excitement. This has been a very hard year and the mindset of TRC is very encouraging and inspiring.”

What Does It Look Like to Participate in the Teacher Research Corps?

Your participation with the Teacher Research Corp begins with an in-person summer institute, which CPM covers your cost to attend. There, you and your team discuss how to grow in your teaching practices, formulate shared problems of practice (i.e. shared challenges across teachers’ contexts and classrooms), and draft a proposal for your project.

During the school year, each team engages in mini-cycles of inquiry, meeting twice monthly (virtually) for their project. One of these meetings occurs with the program’s leadership team. All participants meet in person again in February at CPM’s Annual Teacher Conference, with travel and rooming costs covered by CPM, for a midyear workshop to share progress and receive additional professional learning.

At the end of each academic year, each team collaboratively creates a findings report that will be uploaded to as a resource for other mathematics educators. Teachers will also be encouraged and supported to submit their work to peer-reviewed practitioner journals, although this is not required.

Prospective teacher researchers may find this Google site useful for learning more about the Teacher Research Corps. The links on the subpages labeled “Institute” and “Teams” direct to a private Google Drive and so will not be available, but the website contains powerful testimonials in addition to other information. 

Meet and Discuss with Teacher Researchers at CPM’s Annual Teacher Conference! 

CPM’s Teacher Researchers are presenting their projects at the 2024 CPM Conference this February! All Teacher Researchers are sharing their in-progress findings during the poster session and some are leading sessions. If you are attending the conference, please stop by! If you aren’t attending the conference, here is a quick overview of the topics being studied in the Teacher Research Corps this year.

Teacher Researchers Project Questions
Anna Dailey Aesthetics/Art in Geometry
1. How can teachers make space for students to cultivate their own aesthetic appreciation for math outside of (and perhaps in addition to) that of research mathematicians? 

2. How does making space for students to broaden their aesthetic appreciation of math impact motivation, especially for students who have been underserved by traditional mathematics instruction? 

3. How do mathematics texts and other instructional materials influence the aesthetic experiences emphasized in the classroom? 

4. How does expanding students’ aesthetic experiences in mathematics impact their view of what mathematics is?
Alexis Reid, Amanda Ethridge, Andie Peterson, and Karen Kurcz Connections and Retention
How can we help students capture their learning during the unit progression using a variety of note-taking strategies, Closure routines, and practice opportunities to build student skill transference, personal connections, and knowledge retention?
Laura Bell, Brooke Nixon, Janine Scott, and Carrie Velasco Asset-Based Collaborative Assessments
How can we approach assessment in a way that is: 
1. asset-based; 
2. aligned with collaborative classroom practices; and
3. focused on understanding over time?
Dawn Bechthold, Matt Rector, and Joe Sebastian Math Confidence and Attitudes 
1. How can regularly scheduled innovation(s), focused on diversifying and expanding student attitudes and beliefs about math, help students have positive “mathitudes”?
2. How would intentional efforts to elevate the math status of students impact their math confidence and engagement within their teams during class?
3. How does redefining what counts as a mathematical contribution impact students’ confidence?
Tom Dagit, Amanda Kadulski, Brooke Raven, and Seni Weber Student Access and Ownership
How can we:
1. foster student ownership in their learning by creating student access points to mathematical content and group discussions; and
2. create and foster collaborative learning groups that enable students to develop problem-solving and critical-thinking skills?

Ready to Find Out How to Become a Teacher Researcher? 

Applications for the 2024–25 school year will be accepted January–March 2024. Apply now or learn more by contacting the Teacher Research Corps Program Manager, Mark Coté.

(CPM’s Teacher Researchers earn an annual stipend to support the extra work that they do during the school year. Their travel and lodging to the Teacher Research Corps Institute are covered by CPM.)

Picture of CPM’s Teacher Research Corps Leadership Team

CPM’s Teacher Research Corps Leadership Team

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Algebra Tiles Blue Icon

Algebra Tiles Session

  • Used throughout CPM middle and high school courses
  • Concrete, geometric representation of algebraic concepts.
  • Two-hour virtual session,
  •  Learn how students build their conceptual understanding of simplifying algebraic expressions
  • Solving equations using these tools.  
  • Determining perimeter,
  • Combining like terms,
  • Comparing expressions,
  • Solving equations
  • Use an area model to multiply polynomials,
  • Factor quadratics and other polynomials, and
  • Complete the square.
  • Support the transition from a concrete (manipulative) representation to an abstract model of mathematics..

Foundations for Implementation

This professional learning is designed for teachers as they begin their implementation of CPM. This series contains multiple components and is grounded in multiple active experiences delivered over the first year. This learning experience will encourage teachers to adjust their instructional practices, expand their content knowledge, and challenge their beliefs about teaching and learning. Teachers and leaders will gain first-hand experience with CPM with emphasis on what they will be teaching. Throughout this series educators will experience the mathematics, consider instructional practices, and learn about the classroom environment necessary for a successful implementation of CPM curriculum resources.

Page 2 of the Professional Learning Progression (PDF) describes all of the components of this learning event and the additional support available. Teachers new to a course, but have previously attended Foundations for Implementation, can choose to engage in the course Content Modules in the Professional Learning Portal rather than attending the entire series of learning events again.

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Building on Instructional Practice Series

The Building on Instructional Practice Series consists of three different events – Building on Discourse, Building on Assessment, Building on Equity – that are designed for teachers with a minimum of one year of experience teaching with CPM instructional materials and who have completed the Foundations for Implementation Series.

Building on Equity

In Building on Equity, participants will learn how to include equitable practices in their classroom and support traditionally underserved students in becoming leaders of their own learning. Essential questions include: How do I shift dependent learners into independent learners? How does my own math identity and cultural background impact my classroom? The focus of day one is equitable classroom culture. Participants will reflect on how their math identity and mindsets impact student learning. They will begin working on a plan for Chapter 1 that creates an equitable classroom culture. The focus of day two and three is implementing equitable tasks. Participants will develop their use of the 5 Practices for Orchestrating Meaningful Mathematical Discussions and curate strategies for supporting all students in becoming leaders of their own learning. Participants will use an equity lens to reflect on and revise their Chapter 1 lesson plans.

Building on Assessment

In Building on Assessment, participants will apply assessment research and develop methods to provide feedback to students and inform equitable assessment decisions. On day one, participants will align assessment practices with learning progressions and the principle of mastery over time as well as write assessment items. During day two, participants will develop rubrics, explore alternate types of assessment, and plan for implementation that supports student ownership. On the third day, participants will develop strategies to monitor progress and provide evidence of proficiency with identified mathematics content and practices. Participants will develop assessment action plans that will encourage continued collaboration within their learning community.

Building on Discourse

In Building on Discourse, participants will improve their ability to facilitate meaningful mathematical discourse. This learning experience will encourage participants to adjust their instructional practices in the areas of sharing math authority, developing independent learners, and the creation of equitable classroom environments. Participants will plan for student learning by using teaching practices such as posing purposeful questioning, supporting productive struggle, and facilitating meaningful mathematical discourse. In doing so, participants learn to support students collaboratively engaged with rich tasks with all elements of the Effective Mathematics Teaching Practices incorporated through intentional and reflective planning.