Conferences and courses
We take part in and contribute to exhibitions and lectures in biennial mathematics events at national and regional levels, as well as other conferences around the country. In the autumn we will be taking part in a number of national conferences on mathematics for small children and workshops on mathematics. We also participate in major school exhibitions during the autumn in Göteborg, Malmö and Stockholm. At Skolforum in Stockholm, we participate in the planning and implementation of exhibitions, mathematics workshops and lectures in a special section on mathematics. Information on current national, Nordic and international conferences is provided on our web site.
NCM’s assignment from the government also covers initiatives for adults learning mathematics. On the web site, we provide information about the organisation of adult education, the players, steering documents and resources and about our cooperation with the City of Stockholm and Linköping University over courses in mathematics education. The work focuses on adults’ learning of mathematics at the compulsory and upper secondary school levels in municipal adult education and in liberal arts education organisations. We also have great interest in learning that takes place in other environments, e.g. at the workplace. See Nämnaren, No. 4, 2005.
Assignments for competence development
To the extent that time permits, we also undertake assignments if they are part of planned longterm development measures in schools and municipalities. One example is our participation in the mathematics initiative for the City of Stockholm. We share our experiences through our web site, in journals, literature, conferences and advisory services.
Investigatory and development work
As a result of assignments from the government and Swedish National Agency for School Improvement, NCM takes part in different national initiatives. For example, the Mathematics Delegation was established at NCM. The work of the Delegation resulted in a report which provides the foundation for a number of measures currently being implemented. Amongst the measures which NCM takes part in can be mentioned support to local supervisors of mathematics education, authoring of support material, the government’s diversity initiative, the transition from upper secondary school to higher education, and coordination with school and business life. A brief summary of current and planned national initiatives and reforms was provided in an earlier issue of Nämnaren and it is also available at the NCM web site in an updated version under the heading "Den negativa trende ännu inte bruten" (The negative trend is not yet broken).
National reference library
NCM’s reference library on the literature of mathematics education contains more than 4 500 volumes and 60 journals. On the web site, there is a resource section where you can search for literature. Information is also provided on a regular basis about new acquisitions and journals with brief descriptions of the content of current articles.
Exhibition of teaching materials
The exhibition covers current Swedish teaching materials for mathematics and related support material- for example, instruction guides for teachers, games and puzzles – covering preschool to upper secondary school and adult education. Publishers present their teaching materials and update the contents regularly. The exhibition is well worth a visit if you’re considering the adoption of new teaching materials. On our web site you will find links to publishers, see also Nämnaren No. 3, 2005.
Information on questions of direct or indirect interest in the teaching of mathematics, its conditions and development is regularly provided on our web site under the heading Aktuellt (What’s new). We monitor and report on debates and discussion in the media and about development work and initiatives, at local, national and international levels.
Advisory services and development support
NCM provides advisory and development support for teachers, schools and municipalities. We often receive requests for teaching material and for persons who could contribute to different conferences and development projects – most often via the Web. School heads and developers of mathematics in municipalities are increasingly visiting NCM to discuss planned development measures. At Kollegieblocket.se (Notebook) – a place of inspiration for teachers of mathematics – we gather information from development work around the country. This work has been categorised and can be quickly accessed. The material contains short descriptions and contact information. The ideas can cover everything from concrete approaches ideas for the classroom to development work throughout the municipality.
Workshops on mathematics
NCM’s Workshops on Mathematics are a meeting forum for everyone interested in ”hands on”, innovative and experimental ways of working in the teaching of mathematics. As a result of numerous requests from teachers wanting to build a mathematics workshop in their own school, we have put together a manual for mathematics workshops, related study circle instruction material with substantial resources on the web to support this. As a result many workshops on mathematics have been built up at schools around the country. Moe and more groups of teachers are visiting the workshops. Visits can be easily booked over the web.
Amongst current projects at NCM can be mentioned mathematics terminology in school, the treasures /richness of mathematics and diagnostic material for numbers and arithmetical operations. One recently started project is Kardborreprojektet (Burdock Project) – an assignment from the Swedish National Agency for School Improvement – where NCM in conjunction with national resource centres in biology and biotechnology, physics, chemistry and technology have been commissioned to develop support material on how teaching in mathematics can contribute to better goal attainment in these subjects, how these subjects can enrich mathematics.
A number of the staff at NCM take part in different research projects. One example is Lars Mouwitz who recently defended his thesis at KTH on mathematics and general education. Another one is that of Jesper Boesen who in September presented his thesis at the University of Umeå on Assessing Mathematical Creativity.
Coordination and cooperation
As is evident from the descriptions above, NCM has extensive cooperation with various national and international organisations, associations, authorities, networks, environments, universities and university colleges. Visit our web site for further information.