Math as a Deciding Factor • Global Position • Developmental Tasks & Gender Influences • Societal

Percentage of Classroom Time Spent on Topics: Global Comparison Practicing Procedures Applying Concepts Investigating New Ways of Thinking Top-Performing Countries 41% 15% 44% United States 96% 4% Less than 1% Data from: Mintz, 2008

The Landscape • Of middle school girls and math

Trophy Traps • Grade Inflation • Acceleration • Gifted and Talented

Comparison of “A” Averages & SAT Scores over Time 1966/ 1968 Percentage of High School Graduates with “A” Averages 1972 17. 6%/ 19% 2003/ 2009 2005 44. 1%/ 48% Average of Verbal SAT Scores 530 508 Average of Math SAT Scores 510 520 Data from: Wells, 2006 Twenge, 2009

Short Cuts that Short Circuit

Strategies that Make a Difference • Mindset (Dweck, 2006) • Responses & Questions (Sadker, M. , Sadker, D. , Zittleman, K. R. , 1994, 2009) • Problems & Solutions: Expanding Both • Writing • Metacognition • Working Spatially • Cooperation, Individual Accountability, & Role Models • Mental Math & Basic Facts • Handling “I don’t know. ” • Praise • Meaning • Know the Learner

Learning from the World: What Exceptional Math Programs Have to Teach Us • Curriculum Focus • Teachers as Professionals • Cultural Values: Everyone Counts

Takeaways • Success in math for females has powerful consequences in identity formation, educational opportunities, job options, and economic potential. • Positive middle school math experiences for girls matter. • There are gender and brain influences that make a difference. • There are strategies and curricular choices that can be directed for the benefit of girls. • Math education in the United States needs intensive care. • With focus and intention, we can make a difference. • As our students go, our world goes.

Orchard House School www. orchardhouse. org for sources and additional research