Teaching Mathematics

Science & Technology
Mathematics & Science Teaching
Course Code
MSTE 5130
Semester Length
15 weeks
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
The BC K-12 mathematics curriculum will be examined with the critical eye of the experienced teacher in order to deeply understand the underlying philosophy as well as the practical considerations of teaching mathematical skills, conceptual development, the role of problem-solving, integration of mathematics within other disciplines and how and why teachers assess learning.
Course Content

Curriculum Study

  • Critical review of the BC K-12 mathematics curriculum to develop a clear understanding of the philosophy of the curriculum and the nature of the processes and pathways.
  • Mathematical problem-solving: what it is and how to foster it.
  • The practical matter of balancing conceptual understanding with skill development.
  • Critical evaluation and comparison of approaches to presenting selected curriculum topics.
  • Integrating mathematics into other school curricula.
  • Assessing mathematical understanding and achievement.  What do we do with the information obtained?
  • Review of online resources for teaching, learning, integrating and assessing mathematical skills and problem-solving.

Problem solving

  • Study of the techniques of mathematical problem-solving from a pedagogical perspective.
  • Practice of problem-solving techniques.

“Popular mathematics”

  • Discussion of remarkable historical mathematical figures.
  • Review of popular mathematical books.
Methods Of Instruction

This course will be run in a seminar format.  Participants will be required to pre-read materials in order to prepare for in-class discussion of the issues.  Discussion will take place both face-to-face during scheduled class times and online via discussion groups.

Means of Assessment

Specific course evaluation procedures will be provided to participants in the first week of classes.  Such procedures will be consistent with the Douglas College Evaluation Policy and will be formative in nature, consisting of some or all of the following:

Seminar participation 0-20%
Weekly online postings/responses 0-20%
Presentations 0-20%
Assignments (e.g. journal, lesson plans, projects, web research, problem-solving, book review) 40-70%
Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will:

  • Thoroughly understand the BC Mathematics IRP for K-7 including an appreciation for how the material connects to IRPs for Mathematics 8, 9 and beyond. 
  • Be able to articulate philosophical and practical goals and objectives of mathematics education.
  • Create mathematics lesson plans that meet the goals of the curriculum, are grounded in a solid understanding of the mathematical content, engage students, and are integrated with other school curricula as appropriate.
  • Apply mathematical knowledge and critical thinking skills to facilitate evaluation of varieties of approaches to teaching particular mathematics topics, in order to better facilitate children’s development of both conceptual knowledge and procedural skills.
  • Appreciate the rewards and challenges of “the mathematical experience”, acquired through engagement in mathematical problem-solving activities and sessions.
  • Have a greater awareness of available resources beyond the IRPs, including popular mathematical literature and web-based materials.
Textbook Materials

A list of recommended textbooks and materials is provided on the instructor’s course outline, available to students at the beginning of the course.

Sample Reference Material

Source documents for BC Curriculum
(All can be found online at: http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/irp/irp_math.htm)

  • B.C. Ministry of Education (2008a). Apprenticeship and Workplace Mathematics: Integrated Resource Package
  • B.C. Ministry of Education (2008b). Foundations Mathematics: Integrated Resource Package.
  • B.C. Ministry of Education (2008c). Pre-calculus Mathematics: Integrated Resource Package
  • B.C. Ministry of Education (2007). Mathematics K-7: Integrated Resource Package (2007).
  • B.C. Ministry of Education (2008a). Mathematics 8 and 9: Integrated Resource Package (2008).
  • B.C. Ministry of Education (2008b). Common Conceptual Framework for Grades 10-12 Mathematics.

Teaching methods and activities

  • Van De Walle, John A (2007). Elementary and Middle School Mathematics, Teaching Developmentally.  New York: Pearson Education, Inc.
  • Easterday, K.E, Henry, L.L. and Simpson, F.M. (1999). Activities for Junior High School and Middle School Mathematics.  Reston, Virginia: NCTM, Inc.


  • Stewart, Ian (2009).  Professor Stewart’s Cabinet of Mathematical Curiosities.  New York: Basic Books.

“Popular mathematics”

  • Hofstadter, Douglas (1979).  Godel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid.  New York: Basic Books.
  • Livio, Mario (2009).  Is God a Mathematician?  New York: Simon and Schuster.
  • Livio, Mario (2005).  The Equation that Couldn’t be Solved.  New York: Simon and Schuster.
  • Paulos, John Allen (1988).  Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and its Consequences.  New York: Hill and Wang.
  • Peterson, Ivars (1988).  The Mathematical Tourist: Snapshots of Modern Mathematics.  New York: Freeman and Company.
  • Singh, Simon (1997).  Fermat’s Enigma: The Quest to Solve the World’s Greatest Mathematical Problem.  Toronto: Penguin Group.



Acceptance to program


No corequisite courses.


No equivalent courses.

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

Institution Transfer Details Effective Dates
There are no applicable transfer credits for this course.

Course Offerings

Fall 2021

There aren't any scheduled upcoming offerings for this course.