NCTM Conference Singapore Math Sessions

Heading to the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Conference in Indianapolis this year? Looking to check out some Singapore Math sessions? Well, there’s good news and bad.

Good news? there are 14 sessions on Singapore Math this year! (Two more than last year.)

Bad news? Anything listed below in pink is an overlapping session.  Here are my thoughts on which session to choose, if you have a conflict.

Click to enlarge.

Thursday, April 14, 2011: 8:30 AM-9:30 AM

36.1- Making Mathematics Accessible: The Singapore Method
Exhibitor Workshop: Marshall Cavendish International

Participants will learn the basic principles in making mathematics accessible to average and struggling students while challenging the advanced students. Learn a few Singapore Math strategies from Dr Yeap Ban Har along the way.

36.15- Singapore Math and the New Common Core-It’s a Beautiful Thing
Exhibitor Workshop: SMARTTraining

The creators of the New Common Core Standards looked to the high performing countries, one of which was Singapore. This workshop will illustrate how the Singapore Math curriculum is uniquely positioned to support American Teachers in having students meet the new standards.

These are both Exhibitor Workshops, meaning that you can find more information about their companies on the Exhibit floor. And it’s a tough call; Dr. Yeap is always awesome. Singapore Math and the Common Core are well-correlated, so this session should be informative. (Disclaimer, I was a co-founder of  SMARTTraining and a partner until 2009)

-> If you’re totally new to Singapore Math, go to the first session.
-> If you’re familiar with the curriculum, go for the Common Core session.

Thursday, April 14, 2011: 9:30 AM-10:30 AM – No conflict (Yeah! Robyn’s great.)

71- Bar Diagrams: Draw Your Way to Problem-Solving Success
Lead Speaker: Robyn Silbey

This highly interactive presentation will teach bar diagramming, a powerful, visual-logical problem-solving strategy focused on thinking and comprehension. Using this enhanced version of Singapore’s bar modeling, you’ll draw bar diagrams to analyze, draw, and solve several word problems. Add this critical-thinking strategy to your problem-solving toolbox.

Thursday, April 14, 2011: 9:30 AM-10:30 AM

151- Math Talk: Teaching Concepts and Skills through Illustrations and Stories
Lead Speaker: Char Forsten

A young child’s understanding of the world is enlightened and expanded through stories and illustrations, so it makes sense to use these resources when teaching mathematics. You will learn to use “math talk,” an approach based on a method used in Singapore, as a powerful way to provide purposeful practice through nursery rhymes, fairy tales, illustrations, and photographs.

164- Singapore Lessons: Visual Models to Move from Arithmetic to Algebra
Lead Speaker: Andy Clark

Singapore’s success in math is in part a result of carefully designed lessons that enable students to represent and visualize mathematical relationships. These models begin with the four operations and then connect  to complex problems and then to algebra. This workshop will demonstrate why their students succeed in algebra at such a high level.

Both of these sessions have the same name as sessions the presenters gave last year, with very similar descriptions.

-> If you’re working with lower elementary go to the first session.
-> Upper elementary and middle school, go for the Common Core session.

Thursday, April 14, 2011: 2:30 PM-3:30 PM

240.3- Singapore Math: Bar Model Method
Exhibitor Workshop: Marshall Cavendish International

Learn to use the bar model method in solving basic and not-so-basic problems from the Singapore classrooms. Dr Yeap Ban Har will model good questioning teachniques used to help students solve word problems involving whole numbers, fractions, ratio and percent.

Thursday, April 14, 2011: 3:00 PM-4:30 PM

246- Paradigm Shift in Problem Solving: A Singapore Approach
Lead Speaker: Robert J. Hogan
Co-Speaker: Sarah A. Schaefer

With this method of solving word problems, students develop a pictorial representation, allowing them to see the big picture. Plan to learn the Singapore method first-hand from teachers and students interacting and solving problems. Algebra and pictures connect naturally unites, and any battle between students and word problems becomes a thing of the past.

254- Models for Challenging Word Problems: Finding Solutions the Singapore Way
Lead Speaker: Anni Elizabeth Stipek

You know the basics of model drawing. Now let’s kick things up a notch! You’ll learn how to solve challenging multistep and before-and-after problems, then move on to prealgebra, algebra, and more. Get ready for some high-intensity learning!

Thursday, April 14, 2011: 3:30 PM-4:30 PM

277- Singapore Math: Constructing with Cubes to Understand Volume
Lead Speaker: Katherine de la Garza

Join us as we explore how a problem-solving lesson on volume encourages students’ inquiry, communication, and metacognition. When students are given the opportunity to explore volume by building figures with cubes, they not only construct meaning and the formula for volume, but also have fun and gain confidence as mathematicians.

278- Hands-On Equations® and Singapore Math: Word Problems Using Icons
Lead Speaker: Linda Bailey
Co-Speaker: Kendra Jensen

This session will see show how using physical or pictorial icons helps students visualize both the representation and the conditions of a word problem. Comparing the approaches used in Hands-On Equations with the bar model of Singapore math in representing and solving five word problems, including one involving fractional relations.

Wow! Five sessions that all overlap! Once again, Dr. Yeap is always puts on an insightful session. Tip: you might want to get there early as I’ve lines beforehand and people turned away at the door. Then you could sprint over to the 3:30 sessions!

-> New to Bar Model Drawing? Aim for Dr. Yeap, with session by Robert Hogan as a backup.
-> Familiar with model drawing and want to extend your skills, head to Anni Stipek’s session at 3:00

Friday, April 15, 2011: 2:00 PM-3:00 PM – No conflict

510- Singapore Math: An Implementation Case Study
Lead Speaker: Kevin T. Mahoney

What happened when an American grades pre-K–6 school adopted Singapore’s math program? Based on three years of research, the presenter’s story will give you a unique view into the process and outcomes for teachers and students. Leave with a realistic picture of this powerful program in action.

Friday, April 15, 2011: 4:00 PM-5:00 PM – No conflict

589.2- Singapore Math: A Digital Curriculum Approach
Exhibitor Workshop: Marshall Cavendish International

The Singapore Math Digital Curriculum aims to help educators teach, and students acquire math concepts with interactive tutorials using content and methods proven effective in Singapore. Discover how the Singapore Math Digital Curriculum introduces activities and games for users to apply their conceptual knowledge and reinforce skills in real-world problem solving strategies.

Can’t make it to this one? Head to the EAI Education booth (2116-2117)  on the Exhibit Floor at 4:00pm when I’ll be presenting a short demo on Mental Math Activities.

Saturday, April 16, 2011: 8:30 AM-9:30 AM

609.2- Singapore Math Demystified
Exhibitor Workshop: Inc.

What is Singapore Math all about, really? In this session, Bill Jackson will share the big ideas behind Singapore Math, including the Concrete>Pictorial>Abstract Approach, Problem Solving, and important consideration for implementation and professional development. Bill will also debunk common misconceptions that people have about Singapore Math.

Saturday, April 16, 2011: 8:30 AM-10:00 AM

613- Fact Fluency the Singapore Math Way
Lead Speaker: Johnette Roberts

Help students build a strong foundation in fact fluency and number sense based on Singapore Math strategies. Fact fluency strengthens conceptual understanding, critical-thinking skills, and efficient problem-solving skills. Participants will learn how to teach fact fluency in a fun, engaging way. Activities will be provided.

-> Bill Jackson has been writing some interesting articles about Singapore Math for the Daily Riff online.

About Cassy

Passionate about Singapore Math + Teacher Trainer and Coach + Treasure Hunter + Learner. Answer to the ultimate question? 42.


  1. […] Good news? There are 11 sessions on Singapore Math this year and they are much more diverse than in the past. (Bummer, though, fewer choices than the 14 offered last year) […]

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