CUSP - Creative University-School Partnerships

The NJDOE awarded Montclair State University/PRISM a 3-year Math Science Partnership grant to fund improvement of mathematics education which is in alignment with the Common Core.  Approximately 70 teachers representing seven districts will be provided professional development either through a 2-week Grades 5-8 Mathematics Summer Institute or by enrolling in the Teaching Middle Grades Mathematics Certificate program at MSU.



CUSP School Districts for 2013









Summer Institute Participants 2013 - representing 7 school districts

 Mathematics Summer Institute Pathway:  Summer Institute participants experienced 70 hours of PD from August 12-23. School year follow-up of 30 hours will include large-group meetings (Districts will be reimbursed for the substitute cost through the grant) and collaborations using an online forum, individual coaching, and a culminating poster session.

 There will be a different strand focus each year and Mathematical Practices will permeate throughout the year. Year-1  addresses algebraic thinking, numbers and operations, ratios and proportional relationships. The elements of the summer institute included teachers as learners; content-driven sessions in which the facilitators modelled pedagogical approaches through content; and reflections and debriefings about learner and teacher experiences. Actual activities involved teachers exploring the content, justifying mathematical thinking, asking questions of each other, and doing hands-on, content-driven activities.  Towards the end of the summer institute, teachers developed an action plan that will help them investigate a particular content area and pedagogical practice. These action plans will become the basis of the academic year support and will be embedded in the follow-up workshop sessions, coaching, and online collaborations.

Teachers will come together three times during the school year (October, January, March) for all-day follow-up sessions.  Districts will be reimbursed for the substitute cost through the grant. These sessions will be driven by needs that the teachers identifyied at the conclusion of the Summer Institute and by their action plans.


Certificate Pathway:  Participanting district middle grades teachers enrolled in the Teaching Middle Grades Mathematics Certificate program for which they take one 3-credit course each semester (tuition and fees provided by the grant). The certificate program is a five-course sequence of content-driven courses specifically designed for practicing middle grades teachers. Teachers in the program have the option of continuing their studies for a Masters of Arts in Middle Grades Mathematics through an additional 18 credits. Similar to the Summer Institute Pathway, the courses in Year 1 will engage teachers in the Numbers and Algebra strands of the CCSSM. In Fall 2013, Number and Operations in the Middle Grades (MATH 505) will be offered followed by Algebraic Thinking (MATH 506) in Spring 2014.

MATH 505: Number and Operations in the Middle Grades. This course prepares middle-grade teachers to help their students understand numbers, ways of representing numbers, relationships among numbers, number systems, operations on numbers, how to compute fluently and how to make reasonable estimates. 3 hours lecture one evening per week.


PRISM located in the BMS Center for Science Teaching and Learning
(Blanton Hall)