We offer workshops for faculty interested in our materials and our teaching techniques . We believe that our inquiry approach is applicable to teaching any mathematics class at any level. If you are interested two facilitators will travel to your institution to facilitate a 1-2 day workshop. Our workshops will help you:
- Experience what mathematical inquiry can feel like in a math for liberal arts class,
- Investigate particular content areas that might connect with your students,
- Understand and practice ways for creating a classroom environment where productive, safe, and deep mathematical inquiry can take place,
- Reflect on the interaction of teacher, student, investigations, mathematics, and inquiry materials in the classroom.
We like to visit classrooms before or after the workshop to get a sense for the institution, audience and special interests of faculty. This can also create space for deeper conversation about a particular class or teaching question. You can find testimonials and a list of past and upcoming workshops below.
Through August 2020 some of the workshops for committed college faculty are funded through the NSF. We decide which workshops are funded based on institution, goals, location, topics, etc. We ask that a local organizer be in charge of registering participants, finding a space to run the workshop in and organizing lunch or snack provisions. See here for suggestions for planning a workshop.
Beginning September 2020 traveling workshops for college level audiences will likely need the financial support from the hosting institution.
We also run traveling workshops for the K-12 level which may not be supported by the NSF. If you are interested in being a local organizer of a K-12 workshop, please contact us to find out about costs and locations. We have done workshops at the elementary, middle and high school level and enjoy particularly connecting inquiry-based teaching with the common core practice standards.
For participants who have attended a workshop and want to continue refining their work as teachers of mathematics in the liberal art courses we offer a stipend of about $200. The work will include reflecting on your teaching using videos and writing, see this blog post for an example of a reflective piece.
Instead of attending or hosting a workshop you can also come visit us! :)
Upcoming traveling & conference workshops
MATYCONN, April 2017 in CT
Christine von Renesse and Volker Ecke will facilitate an IBL workshop at MATYCONN in Waterbury, CT on April 21. Registration details coming. Hope to see you there! :)
Past traveling & conference workshops
Joint Meetings, January 2017 in Atlanta, GA
Christine von Renesse and Phil Hotchkiss attended and gave talks at JMM 2017. We also joined the booth of “The Initiative for Mathematics Learning by Inquiry” (MLI).
IBL workshop in Corning, NY
"The interaction of the instructors with the "students" was key. They practiced what they preached. They demonstrated what IBL is all about. Nicely done!"
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse facilitated an IBL workshop (NYSMATYC) on October 22, 2016 in Corning, NY.
IBL Professional Development Day at Mohawk School District, MA
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse facilitated an all-day workshop on August 23, 2016 at Mohawk High School.
IMAGINARY Conference, Berlin Germany, July 2016
Christine von Renesse gave a talk at the IMAGINARY conference.
MAA Mathfest, August 2016
Phil Hotchkiss facilitated an IBL workshop for Project NExT at Mathfest.
ICME Conference, Hamburg Germany, July 2016
On July 29 2016, Christine von Renesse and Volker Ecke facilitated a 1.5h IBL workshop at the International Congress on Mathematical Education. The 16 participants experienced IBL as students (3a+5b), analyzed the work of teaching in this inquiry-based learning classroom, learned about the resources for teaching using inquiry, and discussed how an inquiry approach to teaching and learning might function their own classroom situations. The participants reported that both their interest and that their confidence in using IBL increased (on a scale of 1="decreased a lot" to 5="increased a lot" the means are 3.97, and 4.09 resp.).
"I liked best ...
... experiencing the student aspect - we usually forget how it feels."
... the process of being students to be able to discuss teacher moves."
... the discussion of the teacher's role. This was the aspect I have not been sure of previously and now feel more confident."
... feedback [during] and after group work - never anything negative."
"I am so glad I found my way to your session in Hamburg. It was like a cool swim on a hot day."
Workshop at Loomis Chaffee High School, CT
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse facilitated a 3h IBL workshop at Loomis Chaffee High School on June 7, 2016. The 16 participants experienced IBL as students and spent time thinking about creating IBL questions themselves. The participants reported that their interest in using IBL increased a lot (on a scale of 1="decreased a lot" to 5="increased a lot" the mean is 4.58) and that their confidence in using IBL increased (mean of 4.10).
"I greatly enjoyed both the student experience and the concrete opportunities to work on materials."
"Thank you. This was fantastic. I feel a lot more inspired."
"Excellent workshop - customized to meet our needs perfectly. Thank you!"
Workshop in NYC
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse facilitated a day-long IBL workshop at Lehmann College on April 15, 2016. The 18 participants experienced IBL as students doing Origami and spent time thinking about teaching tools and assessment.
"Experiencing IBL myself was eye opening!"
Workshop in Ventura, CA
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse facilitated an IBL workshop in Ventura in March 12-13, 2016. About 10-15 community faculty from Ventura College and Oxnard College experienced mathematics in an IBL classroom (by exploring clapping patterns), developed tools for opening up closed tasks for their students, and focused on specific IBL units for specific courses (including calculus and elementary statistics). Several faculty invited the facilitators into their classrooms to observe, reflect, co-teach, and collaborate.
"The most effective part of of the workshop was being able to put new IBL ideas into practice right away."
"The planning of a new lesson was [most helpful]."
"I will try to implement IBL in my class."
Workshop at Nothern Arizona University, AZ
Phil Hotchkiss facilitated IBL activities at Nothern Arizona University, February 11-13, 2016.
The 3 workshops were geared toward students, faculty and in-service teachers.
"Mr. Phil Hotchkiss is an amazing presenter. He provided us with engaging activities. THANK YOU.”
“I appreciated the recognition of different thought process involved in finding solutions.”
“Loved it!” Thank you for sharing the information.”
“Thank you! It was wonderful and inspiring!”
Workshop at Assumption College, MA
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse facilitated an IBL workshop, January 22-23, 2016 at Assumption College in Worcester, MA. The 15-20 participants met for an afternoon and a morning session, starting to build a regional IBL community. The facilitators were also invited to co-facilitate a Calculus II class at Assumption college.
"I believe the most effective aspect [of the workshop] was experiencing IBL as a student and unpacking what it is like as the facilitator. I think it gave me a real sense of what kinds of activities to utilize with my students."
"[The most effective parts of the workshop were] explicitly looking at and practicing the teaching moves with a group of eager learners before I try it with my reluctant students."
Workshop in Spokane, WA
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse facilitated an IBL workshop, January 11-13, 2016 at Spokane Falls Community College. The 15 participants met for 3 afternoons and invited the facilitators into their classrooms in the morning.
"The presenters were experts and wonderful in analyzing situations and supporting us in our work"
"This workshop exceeded my expectations. With a post-secondary focus, I expected a more typical 'quick fix' message. I felt the work we experienced here is much more fully and authentically aligned with current education research than any post-secondary PD I have ever experienced."
Workshop in Carrington, ND (NDMATYC)
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse facilitated an IBL workshop on October 2-3, 2015.
See also this flyer .
"This was informative and motivational. I was a bit skeptical initially but as I became more familiar and actually created a series of IBL questions, I became more convinced that this is something I wish to use in my finite and calculus classes!"
"Awesome Presentation by two great people".
PBL Math Teaching Summit at Deerfield Academy, MA
Julian Fleron and Phil Hotchkiss presented the keynote at the PBL summit , July 16-19, 2015 . 32 participants.
The IBL workshop, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse were staff at the IBL workshop. July 7-10, 2015. 40 participants.
IBL workshop site
Workshop at Seattle University, WA
2 day workshop at Seattle University February 27/28, 2015. Run by Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse. 25 participants.
"I loved the fact that the workshop was essentially run using IBL. It was very helpful to see the masters work on us."
"The workshop was great and I hope it will make a big difference in how I teach."
Workshop at the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter School
Half-day workshop at the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter School (high school), South Hadley, MA, November 24, 2014. Focus on using the arts in mathematics classes to motivate and engage students, to raise interesting mathematical questions, and to provide opportunities for creating mathematical arts projects. Run by Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse. 15 Participants.
Workshop Topic: Arts connections, dance, symmetry, and inquiry-based learning.
Feedback: Overall session rating – 4.79/5.0
"I particularly appreciated the examination of the pedagogical aspects of this work."
"Huge wealth of ideas! I'd love to have time to investigate this work deeper. Thanks!"
"The resources will be especially useful in terms of helping us implement the ideas."
"The speakers were very approachable and open to ideas and conversations. They obviously love what they do and have a strong desire to share their knowledge."
Workshop at AAC&U, Atlanta, GA
Workshop at the Association of American Colleges and Universities Conference, November 7, 2014.
Run by Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse. 90 min workshop, 40 participants.
"You really pushed the participants to their learning edge, great facilitation."
"This was the most fun and engaging workshop of the conference!"
Workshop at Quinnipiac University, CT
Full day workshop at Quinnipiac University September 27, 2014. Run by Phil Hotchkiss and Christine von Renesse. 25 participants.
"You guys are rockstars!"
"I liked the encouragements to try different teaching styles."
"I would like to observe a class of theirs."
Workshop in Ithaca, NY
2 day workshop at Cornell University in August 2014. Run by Phil Hotchkiss, Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse.
The origami folding was such a perfect intro to so many different aspects of IBL. Surprise - active engagement - ramping up - gentle nudges - how to interact as instructors - all the discussions were great.
Thank you for your great informational session. Especially helpful was having you think through my curriculum with me and how I can easily and in small steps use resources from your work to start IBL. You gave me hope that I can be successful and have recharged my thinking about math education.
The IBL workshop, Kenyon College, OH
Supporting participants interested in IBL for MLA classes. Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse. June 2014. 40 participants.
IBL workshop site
R.L. Moore IBL Conference, Denver, CO
Plenary Talk at the Legacy of R.L. Moore Conference by Julian Fleron and Philip Hotchkiss. June 2014.
NEMATYC Conference, Middlesex Community College, Lowell, MA
Workshop at the NEMATYC conference in April 2014 by Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse. 90 min workshop.
Topic: Asking good questions. About 20 faculty participated.
Westmont College, Santa Barbara, CA
Professional Development Workshop at Westmont College, CA in March 2014 facilitated by Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse. 2 days of workshops and class visitations with interested faculty from Westmont College, University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) and Santa Barbara City College (SBCC).
Topic: Inquiry-Based Learning in Mathematics Classes. About 20 faculty participated in experiencing IBL as students, practicing teacher moves and brainstorming about improving their teaching.
AMATYC conference, Anaheim, CA
1 hour workshop, a poster session and IGNITE event at the AMATYC conference in Anaheim, CA in October 2013 -- facilitated by Julian Fleron and Christine von Renesse.
Workshop Topic: RK puzzles, CAT Scans and Inquiry-Based Learning. About 30 faculty participated in the workshop.
Feedback: Overall session rating – 3.9/4.0
"Fabulous! I will be inviting you to come to my institution! I really appreciate that the materials are sorted by math topic."
"Wow! That was excellent! Very well planned + executed. Great modeling of inquiry-based lesson."
"Nice job of taking us through the discovery and then connecting it."
"Nice presentation. Cat scans! Wow!"
Lincoln Land Community College, IL
Professional Development Workshop at Lincoln Land Community College, IL in October 2013 facilitated by Volker Ecke and Philip Hotchkiss. Day long workshop and class visitations with interested faculty.
Topic: Inquiry-Based Learning in Mathematics Classes. About 30 faculty participated throughout the day.
Massasoit Community College, MA
3 hour workshop at Massasoit Community College, MA in October 2013 facilitated by Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse.
Topic: deep mathematical conversations and good questions. About 20 faculty, administrators and tutors participated.
Feedback: Overall session rating – 4.87/5.0
"Fantastic Session. It was great to learn something new, and then turn around and try to help someone else through that same problem only by questioning."
"An excellent presentation. I look forward to checking out their web site."
"I really enjoyed this workshop. Thanks so much."
"Very well done. Please think about getting permission to film one of your sessions to make it available on the internet."
R.L. Moore Conference
Workshop at the Legacy of R.L. Moore Conference in June 2013 by Julian Fleron and Philip Hotchkiss. 90 minute workshop and discussion with interested faculty.
Topic: Mathematical Inquiry in the Liberal Arts. About 30 faculty participated.
The IBL workshop, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA
Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse were staff at the IBL workshop. July 2013. 40 participants.
IBL workshop site
NEMATYC conference at North Shore Community College, Danvers, MA
Workshop at the NEMATYC conference in April 2013 by Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse. 90 min workshop then deeper conversation with interested faculty.
Topic: The game nim. About 20 faculty participated.
Feedback: Overall session rating – 4.96/5.0
"Very Challenging + Engaging!!"
"Fantastic and engaging talk! Can't wait to get more involved!"
"This was really great and refreshing! I have seen other activity based workshops but have not appreciated the facilitator's pedagogy around the "sharing" piece as much as I did today. I think that this is a big part of what made this a really strong session!"
"I would like to see my school adopt a course like this to introduce students to critical thinking."
"This approach generates more enthusiasm and ownership of key concepts."
Worcester State University, MA
Workshop at Worcester State University by Julian Fleron and Phil Hotchkiss on 20 October, 2011.
"The workshop was met with enthusiasm by both faculty and students alike… Their project provides valuable service to the mathematics community by generating a series of materials ready for use by college faculty. These materials are inquiry-based, very innovative, and in many cases interdisciplinary. These are qualities that will engage liberal arts students with mathematics." —Richard Bisk, Chair of Mathematics, Worcester State University
Salem State University, MA
Workshop at Salem State University by Volker Ecke and Christine von Renesse on March 28, 2011. 1 hour workshop then lunch and deeper conversation with interested faculty.
Topic: Straight Cut Origami. About 10 faculty (and 10 students) participated.