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Randall E. Groth

Examine how types of statistical variability recommended in GAISE can be taught alongside the data displays recommended in CCSSM.

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Randall E. Groth

Research findings show that teachers often need considerable help developing conceptual understanding of geometric definitions (Borasi 1996).

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Randall E. Groth

The relationship between educational research and teaching practice has typically been stormy. Researchers and teachers sometimes seem to be operating under different agendas. Researchers are often interested in theoretical and general questions, whereas teachers are generally interested in solving problems related to situations that arise in classes each day (Labaree 2003). The valued currency in the research community is work that develops and refines theory, whereas practical application is valued in the community of educational practice (Silver 2003). Given these contrasting objectives, the idea of linking research with practice can seem daunting. It has become imperative, however, for dialogue to occur between the two communities in light of legislation mandating research-based practices in schools (U.S. Department of Education 2002).

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Randall E. Groth

Teachers of grades Pre-K-8 are charged with the responsibility of developing children's statistical thinking. Hence, strategies are needed to foster statistical knowledge for teaching (SKT). This report describes how writing prompts were used as an integral part of a semester-long undergraduate course focused on building SKT. Writing prompts were designed to help assess and develop the subject matter knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge of prospective teachers. The methods used to design the prompts are described. Responses to a sample prompt are provided to illustrate how the writing prompts served as tools for formative assessment. Pretests and posttests indicated that prospective teachers developed both SKT and knowledge of introductory college-level statistics during the course. It is suggested that teacher educators employ and refine the prompts in their own courses, as the method used for writing and assessing the prompts is applicable to a broad range of statistics and mathematics courses for teachers.

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Randall E. Groth

Regarding the relationship between theory and practice in teaching mathematics, Anna Sfard (2003) wrote,

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Randall E. Groth

How the analysis of discussion board conversations can be useful for charting the path instruction should take. This analysis is illustrated within the context of a course for preservice teachers. The use of such analysis as an assessment tool is also considered in relation to mathematics courses for high school students. Online discourse offers an alternative to in-class group work where the teacher cannot monitor or be privy to all discussions and learning.

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Randall E. Groth

The lesson study model of professional development that originated in Japan is becoming increasingly popular in the United States (Lesson Study Research Group 2009; Stigler and Hiebert 1999). At its core, lesson study is a means of bringing teachers together to carry out the process of planning a lesson, implementing and observing it, and then examining it during a debriefing session (Yoshida 2008). The debriefing component is one of the most distinctive characteristics of this type of professional development. It provides a means–discussion–for reflecting on the strengths and weaknesses of the collaboratively planned lesson. As such, the debriefing component merits special attention from those currently engaged in lesson study as well as those considering using it.

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Randall E. Groth

The purpose of this article is to sketch a hypothetical descriptive framework of statis-tical knowledge for teaching. Because statistics is a discipline in its own right rather than a branch of mathematics, the knowledge needed to teach statistics is likely to differ from the knowledge needed to teach mathematics. Doing statistics involves many primarily nonmathematical activities, such as building meaning for data by examining the context and choosing appropriate study designs to answer questions of interest. Although there are differences between mathematics and statistics, the two disciplines do share common ground in that statistics utilizes mathematics. This connection suggests that existing research on mathematical knowledge for teaching can help inform research on statistical knowledge for teaching. I propose the use of research from the Learning Mathematics for Teaching (LMT) project to help shape the discussion. I conclude by identifying areas of needed research and suggesting directions for teacher education efforts in statistics.

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Randall E. Groth

In this editorial, I describe how past monographs have served the four functions listed above. The purpose is to stimulate readers' thinking about aspects of their own work that might be suitable for the monograph series. I also describe a recent change in the monograph review process that is intended to increase proposal submissions.

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Randall E. Groth

Statistics education has begun to mature as a discipline distinct from mathematics education, creating new perspectives on the teaching and learning of statistics. This commentary emphasizes the importance of coordinating perspectives from statistics education and mathematics education through boundary interactions between the two communities of practice. I argue that such interactions are particularly vital in shared problem spaces related to the teaching and learning of measurement, variability, and contextualized problems. Collaborative work within these shared problem spaces can contribute to the vitality of each discipline. Neglect of the shared problem spaces may contribute to insularity and have negative consequences for research and school curricula. Challenges of working at the boundaries are considered, and strategies for overcoming the challenges are proposed.