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MMP Math Mini-Grant Awards Page - 2005-06

Listed below are the 45 MPS Schools that received a mini-grant during the 2005-06 school year to develop professional development experiences for teachers by improving mathematical content knowledge or by using CABS to improve classroom practice.

School Name and MTL

Mini-Grant Title and Summary Download Report

Academy of Accelerated Learning

MTL: Deborah Paszowski


Title- Using the Protocol to Examine Student Work

Summary- The protocol will be introduced to classroom teachers by the Math Teacher Leader and the Math Specialist during two hour sessions occurring within the school day. Teachers will then be able to use the protocol in future meetings to examine student work and learn where their students strengths and weaknesses lie.

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MTL: Joanie Marchillo


Title- Are Our CABS Binders Working?

Summary- Classroom assessments based on standards (CABS) will be developed and utilized as an ongoing means of gathering and analyzing student data in the field of mathematics. The data will be used to enhance and guide instruction. A result from utilizing the CABS will be an increase in the number of students scoring the proficient/advanced range on formative and standardized tests. Students will be ensured the opportunity to communicate mathematically, maintain higher-level thinking skills and receive individual guided instruction to meet educational needs. The teaching staff will gain a deeper knowledge of state descriptors and the Learning Targets. The Learning Team will be the project’s foundation. It will maintain constant communication with colleagues and administrators while developing the CABS. The CABS will reflect dialogue and issues addressed at various meetings. The CABS will reflect alignment with the standards and format design of the WKCE-CRT. They will be assessable and challenging for all students, thus guaranteeing an increase in student academic advancement.



MTL: Janet Domask

Title- The Language of Mathematics- Both In the Classroom and Standardized Testing

Summary- Teachers will complete a book study, implement literacy strategies, and continue working on constructed response items as outlined in our educational plan. With these strategies and teacher collaboration, students will become more proficient in reading, writing, and communicating in mathematics, subsequently increasing student achievement.

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Bradley Tech

MTL: Laura Maly


Title- Supporting Special Education Math Teachers to Impact Math Education for ALL Students

Summary- This project will provide all Regular and Special Education math teachers the opportunity to work collaboratively to provide all students with a rigorous mathematics experience. All math teachers will be exposed to research-proven strategies for teaching high-level math, examine CABS and analyze student work, and participate in team-teaching.

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MTL: LuAnn Vielbaum

Title- Creating CABS

Summary- Classroom assessments based on standards (CABS) will be developed and utilized as an ongoing means of gathering and analyzing student data in the field of mathematics. The data will be used to enhance and guide instruction. A result from utilizing the CABS will be an increase in the number of students scoring the proficient/ advanced range on formative and summative tests. The teaching staff will gain a deeper knowledge of state descriptors and the Learning Targets. The Learning Team will be the project’s foundation. It will maintain constant communication with colleagues and administrators while developing the CABS. The CABS will reflect dialogue issues addressed at various meetings. The CABS will reflect alignment with the standards and format design of the WKCE-CRT. CABS will be meaningful and challenging for all students, thus guaranteeing an increase in student academic advancement.

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MTL: Amy Kallman

Title- CABS: Changing Approaches and Building Successes

Summary- The main goal of the project is to create a working CABS binder for all staff who teach math. Twenty-five staff members will take part in 2 planning sessions that focus on writing constructed response CABS for the strands of measurement and number operations. A committee will evaluate the CABS using the Assessing an Assessment guide. These CABS will help students become more proficient mathematical thinkers at all grade levels.


Clement Avenue

MTL: Mary Bologh

Title- Clement Avenue- At Home Math Kits: The Link Between Home and School

Summary- Interactive Family-Centered Math Kits will be created for every student at Clement Avenue School. From K4 through 5 th grade, every student will be provided a math kit filled with all of the necessary manipulatives to complete a weekly math activity based on the MPS Learning Targets. The games and activities will reinforce core mathematical concepts as delineated within the Comprehensive Mathematics Framework. Our goal is to create activities that reinforce critical math concepts as well as providing students additional opportunities to practice constructed responses as well explaining their reasoning to justify solutions to problems.

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Eighty-First Street

MTL: Tracy Carus and Jennifer Wolf

Title- Math CABS- Improving Teaching and Student Learning?

Summary- Are we using our CABS to drive our instruction? Is our feedback evaluative or is it descriptive? These are two questions we will discuss as a large group and at grade-level. WE will learn how to make assessments formative. We will use samples of student work to drive instruction and improve our feedback.

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MTL: Elnore McKinley

Title- Mathematic Curriculum and Assessment Learning Target Alignment

Summary- Staff will develop and share grade level appropriate lesson plans and assessments aligned with the state standards and math learning targets within the MPS Mathematics Framework to improve classroom practice. Staff will share multiple strategies that will allow them to impact student learning. They will be able to provide meaningful feedback to students to clear up misconceptions on work samples, assessments, or during sharing time.


MTL: Catherine Seelman

Title- Constructed Responses

Summary- Teachers will create 36 constructed response questions per grade level. These questions will be learning target specific and scored based on the WKCE 3 point rubric.

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MTL: Julie Buckholt

Title- Navigating Algebra Curriculum

Summary- The math teacher leader will assist our staff in aligning classroom instruction and assessment with the algebra descriptors. Teachers will design and use algebra CABS as a regular component of mathematics instruction.

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MTL: Amy Onderak

Title- Do Our CABS “Measure” Up?

Summary- Standards in Practice (SIP) teams comprised of classroom teachers and the math teacher leader will create grade level classroom assessments based on standards (CABS) in the area of mathematical measurement including problems with constructed responses. Teachers will analyze the questions, identify learning targets and levels of thinking (Bloom’s Taxonomy), SIP teams will create aligned rubrics and score student assessments, finally, they will analyze student work and plan strategies to improve student learning. Materials will be purchased to support lessons in measurement in multiple grade levels.



MTL: Lee Ann Pruske


Title- Name That Big Mathematical Idea! Using Understanding by Design to Create Mathematical CABS and Build Teacher Content Knowledge

Summary- Teachers will use the Understanding by Design format to identify the enduring understanding (key concepts and ideas) in each grade level and mathematical content strand to create classroom assessments based on standards (CABS). Teachers will work together in grade level and cross grade level teams to explore how mathematical content (enduring understanding and essential questions) grow and develop in each mathematical strand, thereby increasing their own mathematical content knowledge and that of their students.



MTL: Geri Volkert

Title- Enhancing Teacher Content Knowledge in the Area of Algebra and Algebraic Reasoning

Summary- This project will focus on an after school book study to further enhance the staff’s knowledge in Algebra and Algebraic Reasoning. We will use Thinking Mathematically Integrating Arithmetic & Algebra in the Elementary School. Reading and discussing of the chapter (focusing on 1 st five chapters) will be in an hourly session. We will also discuss the implementation in the classroom. Teachers will apply their knowledge in the classroom and share their results at the next session. This will help our staff to better develop and use BABS in the classroom. The information will be shared with other staff members at grade level and staff meetings. The book will be a valuable resource to be used by the classroom teachers to promote their professional development in Math.

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MTL: Gale Niemcyznski

Title- Designing and Fine-Tuning CABS Related to the Wisconsin State Standard of Measurement

Summary- Cross grade-level groups of teachers will use the “Assessing the Assessment: guide to develop and fine-tune CABS related to the Wisconsin State Standard of measurement. These CABS will incorporate higher level thinking including constructed responses, and will be used for formative assessment in order to improve student proficiency in measurement.

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MTL: Donna Sturycz

Title- The Universal Language of Mathematics: A Bilingual Perspective of Mathematic Vocabulary Development in Spanish/ English ( ULM) at Greenfield Bilingual School

Summary- see report.



MTL: Dustine Walker

Title- Hit the Target: Ensuring Student Achievement in Mathematics Through Quality CABS

Summary- This project is designed to be a Professional Learning Community that includes administrators, teachers, the Literacy Coach and the MTL. The PLC’s task will be to unpack the mathematics learning targets using the Wisconsin State Standards and Descriptors as a tool. The PLC will then create and assess high quality Classroom Assessments Based on Standards (CABS). The CABS will be used to gather and analyze student data at grade level meetings. Students will be assessed with higher level, higher quality assessments that will give teachers a better idea of how students are thinking mathematically which, in turn, will lead to better mathematics instruction. When we know exactly what the target is and how to hit it we will all be on target in math.



MTL: Nicol Peters-Freeman

Title- Moving Forward After CABS….Providing Evaluative Feedback

Summary- Classroom teachers will work collaboratively with their grade level partner to review and refine current CABS embedding all possible resources including state standards for math, state descriptors, and math learning targets. We will look at the formative data provided from the previous years’ compilation to assess where our strengths and weaknesses are and to make informed decisions on best teaching practices for our math curriculum. Through this combined school wide effort, staff will begin to self-reflect on the types of feedback we give our students and begin to explore the student’s need for more evaluative feedback. As a result, we are hoping to bring more awareness to the importance of pre and post assessments and providing evaluative feedback which will then impact our students on how to communicate more effectively how they solve math problems.

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Dr. King Elementary

MTL: Timon Harris

Title- Mathematics CABS Development and Implementation

Summary- To develop and utilize CABS (classroom assessments based on standards) as an ongoing means (process) of gathering and analyzing student data in the field of mathematics. The data will be used to enhance and guide instruction. A result of utilizing the CABS will be an increase in the number of students scoring the proficient/advance range on formative and standardized test. Students will be ensured the opportunity to communicate mathematically, maintain higher-level thinking skills and receive individual guided instruction to meet educational needs. The teaching staff will gain a deeper knowledge of state descriptors and the Learning Targets. The Learning Team will be the project’s foundation. It will maintain constant communication with colleagues and administrators while developing the CABS.


King High School

MTL: Wanda Bussey

Title- Summer Algebra Laboratory

Summary- Fund a Summer Algebra Laboratory, a 3-week completion course/ teacher training workshop. A master teacher will be responsible for finishing algebra (2 nd semester) for incoming 8 th graders and for mentoring 2 eighth grade master teachers who also teach algebra in middle school.


Metropolitan High School

MTL: Penney Morse

Title- Creating CABS for Discovering Algebra

Summary- Our Learning Team decided we needed to build a professional learning community that would focus on examining student work on Classroom Assessments Based on Standards (CABS) and learn how to use the MMP Protocol as a model to improve instruction and improve student’s understanding.


Marshall High School

MTL: Sue Dean

Title- Individualized Algebra and Geometry Curriculum

Summary- Students who need only one semester of either algebra or geometry to graduate will be assigned in one class to complete their mathematics requirement. In order to have four simultaneous courses, the students will need to work independently at times. Individualized units will be created and aligned to the Learning Targets and CABS to allow the students to work on their course work at their own pace.


Milwaukee High School of the Arts

MTL: Elizabeth Somppi

Title- CABS-WKCE Math Project and the Everyday Rubric

Summary- With the collaboration between the MTL, Mathematics Department and a representative from the Special Education department, we will collaboratively develop CABS and rubrics to improve our WKCE scores for the year 2008. These CABS will be available for all Mathematics and Special Education teachers in our school to use.


Milwaukee German Immersion

MTL: Frank Lammers

Title- Examining Alignment Between MPS Learning Targets and German Math Series

Summary- This project will focus on examining the correlation of MPS Math Learning Targets, WKCE descriptors, and state standards with the review of several German math series. Ten teachers representing Grades 1-5 will meet together after school with the Principal and Literacy Coach to develop a German Math Textbook Adoption Checklist. This document will then be used to rate sample copies of German math series to determine if these materials are in alignment with state standards and to what extent they would require adaptation. The examination of German math series and the ensuing dialogue about curricula and teaching strategies employed in another country will provide teachers with an expanded repertoire of research-based teaching strategies. By comparing the math curriculum as taught in various states of Germany with the MPS Learning Targets and state standards, our Professional Learning Community will gain a broader perspective and awareness of the similarities and differences in teaching strategies, thus developing a deeper understanding of mathematics. Teachers will also gain a better understanding of the scope and sequence of mathematics and the state descriptors as they relate to standardized tests. This information will be shared at grade level, cross-grade level, staff and Learning Team meetings. This process will culminate with the PLC reaching a determination if our students would benefit more from using a German math series rather than a German translation of the MPS-proposed English Math Adoption.

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MTLs: Andrea Payan

Title- Formative Assessment: Working Together to Gain a Deeper Understanding of CABS

Summary- In this project participants will learn about the use of formative assessments to guide instruction. The participants will attend two 2-hour sessions run by learning team members. In these sessions we will discuss formative vs. summative assessment particularly in the area of mathematics. Participants will then share their learning at grade level meetings.

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MTL: Michelle Douglas-Meyer

Title- Put Me In Coach, I’m Ready to Teach and Assess Mathematics!

Summary- Participants will be trained in content-focused cognitive coaching, including practice time and participation in a web log. We will lead grade level teams in quality discussions about student work from math CABS using coaching. Staff will better understand math content, effective math CABS, and what student needs are through these thought-provoking discussions.


Ninety-Fifth Street

MTL: Jaime Haar

Title- Solving Problems in Our Problem-Solving Instruction

Summary- Teachers will receive strategies for promoting problem-solving skills into their daily work. After 4 after school work sessions teachers will have been trained in the student work protocol and will analyze student work and their teaching for problem-solving skills. As a result, we hope to see teachers more comfortable with adapting lessons in mathematics regardless of curriculum.

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MTL: Alice Knight

Title- “The Young Children Reinvent Arithmetic: Implications of Piaget’s Theory” Book Study Cohort Group

Summary- The project will be conducted as a book study of 13 teachers. The book chosen for discussion, reading, and analysis is “Young Children Reinvent Arithmetic: Implications of Piaget’s Theory,” 2 nd edition, with innovative math teaching and how children develop math knowledge the focused areas.

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MTL: Katie Fitzpatrick

Title- Algebra-WOW! It Makes Sense!

Summary- Our project focuses on further strengthening our content knowledge of the targeted strand, Algebra, by forming a book study group, centering around, “Thinking Mathematically: Integrating Arithmetic and Algebra.” Members from each grade level, the learning team, and an administrator will read chapters and come prepared to discuss important ideas which will be implemented and translate into student achievement in Algebraic reasoning.

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Pulaski High School

MTL: Don Bolanowski


integrating Arithmetic Skills into the Algebra Classroom

Summary- Special Education teachers and inclusion algebra teachers will learn how to teach algebraic concepts to students with weaknesses in arithmetic.

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MTL: Great Plicka

Title- Deconstructing the Learning Targets in Mathematics

Summary- “Deconstructing the Learning Targets in Mathematics” will provide a framework to help teachers deconstruct the Milwaukee Public School’s Learning Targets in Mathematics so they are able to align instruction and assessment. Teachers in 2 nd, 3 rd, 4 th, and 5 th grade will have release time to deconstruct the Learning Targets in Mathematics and refine their CABS based on the performance skills in the targets. These assessments will be shared with other grade levels and the Learning Team. In order to enhance mathematical content knowledge teachers use information from Classroom Assessment for Student Learning Doing It Right- Using It Well.

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Sarah Scott

MTL: Renee Seppanen

Title- Working Together to Create & Learn from Classroom Assessments Based on Standards for Mathematics in the Middle School.

Summary- This project will focus on cross grade-level group of mathematics teachers working on Classroom Assessments Based on Standards. The participants will select one strand of the descriptors to create a 6 th, 7 th, and 8 th grade assessment. This will be given to the students at each of the grade levels, and the results will be analyzed. Participants will use the guide “Assessing an Assessment: and the protocol for “Analyzing Student Work” from the MMP. As participants, we will have the opportunity to collaborate, reflect, and analyze student work. This will strengthen our own teaching, our professional growth, and our students’ achievement level. We will share the experience with the entire staff. This is the first year Sarah A. Scott Middle School has used their Action Plan money to rally all teachers around mathematics. There has been 100% buy-in for two Saturday workshops with mathematics teachers. We are looking forward to having this mini-grant to help us continue this good work.


Sixty-Fifth Street

MTLs: Judy Greco

Title- Algebra, Accessibly Yours

Summary- Teachers will participate in workshops designed to increase their content knowledge of Algebraic Relationships using the PSSM Navigations series, “Navigating Through Algebra.” They will improve their knowledge of the state descriptors in the Algebraic Relationships strand. When their knowledge base is strengthened participants will develop their own capacity for distributed leadership in this topic.


South Division

MTL: Clara Mayorga

Title- Improving Teacher’s Mathematical Content Knowledge and Classroom Practice Through the use of Technology and CABS

Summary- Participants will receive training on the use of the TI-83 as well as the sign up, use and care of classroom sets of laptops and projector as technology tools in the classroom. Through the use of technology, students will be able to continue their use of the TI-83, Geometer’s Sketchpad, and Excel. Participants will meet to share information from the NCTM conference attendees and to network and share best practices and successful lessons. In addition, participants will meet to create and choose and share CABS to implement in their classroom and later to analyze student work as well as make any necessary modifications. It is expected that the math teacher participants will notice progress in their students’ understanding of mathematical concepts as well as in their won professional development.


Starms Discovery Learning Center

MTLs: Tasha Warner, Sarita Felder, and Kendra Ash

Title- Examining the Effectiveness and Results of Teacher-Created Classroom Assessments in Mathematics

Summary- The focus of this project is the MMP Assessing an Assessment Guide and the MMP Protocol for analyzing and learning from student work. In conjunction, the tools contribute to providing more accurate assessments and/or measures of students’ mathematical proficiency on teacher created classroom assessments based on standards (CABS).

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MTL: Amanda Ulin

Title- Assessing the Assessment

Summary- Assessing the Assessment will align current CABS in grades K-5 to MPS Learning Targets and State Descriptors. Going through the process of the protocol will help teachers have a better understanding of the MPS Learning Targets and the State Descriptors as they relate for grade levels and across grade levels. The process will also help teachers gain experience using the guide “Assessing the Assessment: which can be used anytime an assessment is developed, summative or formative. It will help teachers become more aware of the thinking levels, not only pertaining to CABS, but also to classroom practice allowing our students not only to have thinking level questions at a level 1, but also at a level 4. It will allow teachers to have consistent results across grade levels and also have comparable data produced by the WKCE-CRT. Assessing the Assessment will increase the number of students proficient or advanced as a result of teachers using consistent CABS which are aligned to the MPS Learning Targets, State Descriptors, and higher thinking levels.

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MTL: Leah Donahue

Title- Creation and Critique of CABS

Summary- Teachers will meet three times over three months to evaluate and analyze CABS. The Assessing the Assessment Guide and Assessment Protocol will be used to help teachers determine students’ knowledge of math concepts. We will focus on “end of unit: and “ongoing” assessments as tools for planning lessons.

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MTL: Patty Neubauer

Title- CABS for Learning

Summary- This project will support teachers in their implementation of our new math CABS. Teachers will understand how to integrate CABS into their regular classroom lessons, recognize the implications of using these assessments for formative purposes and consider the value of collaborative work to unify the math instruction in our building.

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Thirty-Eighth Street

MTL: Rahman Malik

Title- Problem Solving: More than Just Word Problems

Summary- Through this project teachers will become familiar with and understand the problem solving standard as defined by the NCTM and recognize the significance of their role in choosing worthwhile problems and tasks, promoting strategies, and creating a classroom environment that emphasizes problem solving.


Thirty-Fifth Street

MTL: Danielle Zivney

Title- Assessing Measurement CABS for Success

Summary- Based on the educational plan’s needs assessment, our school is lacking in the are of measurement. To improve student achievement, teachers will participate in developing quality CABS in the area of measurement. From this information, teachers will utilize the MMP assessing the assessment protocol.


Twenty-First Street

MTL: Melissa Peltier

Title- Using the “Understanding by Design” to Plan Math Units

Summary- Teachers, kindergarten through fifth grade including special education, will review the “Understanding by Design” template and use it to plan a unit. After choosing one learning target to focus on at the end of the year, grade level teachers, working together during common planning time and after school, will use the template to identify math knowledge and skills, create assessments and plan instruction for a unit of study. During the process, teachers will review or learn how to give effective feedback to the students and use the protocol.

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MTL: Cecile Labecki

Title- Teach Your Parents Well: A Mathematics Workshop for Parents

Summary- This project will focus on developing and maintaining parental involvement and confidence in mathematics education. This is to be accomplished through regular after-school seminar sessions centered around the 3 rd through 5 th grade mathematics curriculum. All strands of mathematics will be addressed, with an emphasis on the particular skills being taught in the classroom concurrently. Instruction will be delivered by 4 th and 5 th grade teachers, in both English and Spanish. Workshops will emphasize communication and use of mathematics vocabulary, therefore it is important that we deliver not only bilingual, but biliterate, instruction. A need has been identified within our school to increase proficiency in all areas of mathematics, and having capable, confident parents will be the guiding force in our success.

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Walker Middle School

MTL: Cynthia Cuellar

Title- Improving Mathematics Instruction Through the Use of Literacy Strategies

Summary- Our Literacy Coach and Reading Resource Teacher will lead math and Special Education teachers in a book study to explore reading strategies so that teachers are better able to support student’s ability to communicate orally and in writing their mathematical reasoning. The book we will use is Literacy Strategies for Improving Mathematics Instruction by J. Kenney. We will focus on vocabulary, technical reading, and writing strategies that re specific to the struggles students face in mathematics. We will meet weekly, giving teachers the ability to try strategies being presented, bring back student samples, and discuss the practical applications.



MTL: Tim Malloy

Title- CABS: A Consistent Measure of Aligning School, District, & State Standards

Summary- Classroom Assessments Based on Standards (CABS) will be developed in mathematics. They will be used to gather and analyze student data, and in turn, the data will be used to guide instruction. As a result, student percentages win the proficient and advanced ranges on the WKCE-CRT will increase. The teaching staff will gain in-depth knowledge of Learning Targets and state descriptors, and students will be challenged with higher levels of assessment that are more in line with the standards.


High School Collaborative

MTLs: Sue Dean, Mary Mooney, Liz Somppi

Title- Writing Constructed Response Problems

Summary- In a collaboration of three high schools we will be constructing response problems for our students to use in preparation for the WKCE-CRT in Fall, 2006. We will also be writing rubrics to use when scoring these prompts in an attempt to develop cohesiveness in the district. We are looking for the outcome of increased test scores in the net school year and, if successful, sharing our process with other high schools in the district.





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