Greater Nebraska Math Teachers Circles' season kicks off

It's official; the Greater Nebraska Math Teachers Circle season has begun. Over 50 math enthusiasts gathered in Kearney before the NATM fall conference for math and munchies at the first Greater Nebraska Math Teachers Circle meeting of the year. Math Teachers Circles bring together mathematicians and teachers with the goal of providing an opportunity to discover and share with students the excitement and richness of problem solving in deep yet accessible mathematical topics.

At the NATM conference, two parallel sessions were held for teachers in order to accommodate a broad audience: secondary teachers studied patterns of integer partitions while elementary teachers pondered models for teaching time and money. Everyone received a free dinner.

Primarily Math veterans Nora Robinson (Kimball, NE) and Jessie Anderson (Hay Springs), along with ESU 13 Staff Developer, Kathy Vandamme, presented “How Long and How Much? A model for teaching time and money" to 16 educators, mostly elementary teachers, from across the state.

Katie Soto of Grand Island Public Schools and UNL mathematics graduate student Lauren Keough presented “Trains and Integer Partitions: How many ways can you add numbers that sum to n?” to 34 secondary teachers and educators. The idea for the topic came from a master’s thesis written by Laura Novak (Nebraska City Public Schools) as she completed her MAT degree this past spring. The presentation used what are known as “Ferrers” and “Young” diagrams to visualize integer partitions, making their study very accessible with patterns that can be analyzed and understood by students various ages.

Now more Math Teachers Circle meetings are being scheduled across Nebraska, with some of the locations listed below. All teachers are invited! For more information and photos from the first GNMTCs of the season, visit

GNMTC meetings:
Beatrice – October 22
Seward – November 5
Falls City – November 17
Scottsbluff – February 9
Norfolk – April 15

Dates TBA: Grand Island, Hebron, Holdrege, North Platte.

Other Math Teachers Circles in Nebraska convene regularly in Kearney, Lincoln, Omaha and Wayne.
For contact information and dates visit

Special thanks to all who contributed to the Greater Nebraska Math Teachers Circle: The Mathematical Sciences Research Institute (MSRI) through the National Security Agency (NSA), NATM, NebraskaMATH and the Center for Science, Mathematics and Computer Education at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.