Integers: A Space for Mathematical Play
Friday, March 3, 2017
5:30 pm Doors Open
6:00 pm Social Hour
7:00 pm Dinner and Talk
Nicole M. Wessman-Enzinger earned a PhD in mathematics education from Illinois State University in 2015, after earning a MA in the subject from DePaul University in Chicago (2009) and a BS in the discipline from Olivet Nazarene University (2005). She was high school math teacher at Herscher High School (Herscher, Illlinois) for five years before working at the university. After teaching high school, she taught in the mathematics departments at both Olivet Nazarene University and Illinois State University. Currently, she works as an assistant professor of education at George Fox University (Newberg, Oregon) where she teaches mathematics content and pedagogy classes for prospective teachers.
Nicole is a STaR Fellow from the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators and has participated in other early career opportunities such as the Psychology of Mathematics Education Young Researcher programs in Vancouver, Canada and Hobart, Australia. Nicole has published articles in various journals (e.g., Teaching Children Mathematics, Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, The Mathematics Enthusiast, Convergence). Currently, she is editor of a book on children’s thinking about integer addition and subtraction. As a researcher, she is broadly interested in the teaching and learning of number, from both historical and psychological perspectives. Nicole has presented her work nationally and internationally. Most recently, she presented some of her research on children’s visual mediators for integers at the International Congress on Mathematics Education in Hamburg, Germany.
The first mathematics education conference Nicole attended was MMC as a prospective teacher and she has many fond memories of attending Friday MMC talks. For this reason, she looks forward to sharing some of her passion about integers at MMC.
Nicole’s talk will address integers a space for intellectual play. Describing instances integer play and playing with integers is important in order to facilitate this type of intellectual play in the future. The playful curiosities of children, arising out of integer addition and subtraction, tended to be concepts that we think of prerequisite knowledge (e.g., magnitude or order, sign of zero) or knowledge that is more nuanced for integer addition and subtraction (e.g., how negative and positive integers can "balance" each other). These instances of integer play and playing with integers will be connected to the work of mathematicians, highlighting the importance of play in school mathematics. We will then discuss ways to incorporate intellectual play in all mathematics classrooms.
Reservations by Monday, February 27th, if possible