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Conferences and Workshops
(Click here for the 2019-2020 Professional Development Series PDF)


How to Begin, Extend, and Intervene in the Development of Algebraic Thinking in Primary Students
Angela Giglio Andrews

Friday, December 2, 2011
10:00 am - 3:00 pm

Latin School of Chicago
Chicago, IL

Please click here to download the post-event materials.

While the focus of the primary math curriculum is on numbers and operations, the roots of algebra reside in the basic mathematics that is taught to our youngest learners. We can choose to keep this hidden, or we can bring it to the forefront of our teaching. When teachers recognize and value the algebraic thinking that is already present in their classrooms, they can extend and deepen thinking in cognitively appropriate ways, so that children develop algebraic intuition and thinking strategies long before they are formally introduced. 

The workshop’s agenda will include:
1)  What is Algebra? What's the Big Deal?
2)  What are the Big Ideas of Algebra at the Primary Level?
  • Deductive and Inductive Reasoning
  • Classification 
  • Patterns and Functions
  • Proportional Reasoning
  • Equality
  • Variables 
  • Representations
3)  Why are these big ideas important - Now, and in the Future? 
4)  How can we recognize, nurture, support, teach, and extend these big ideas in the primary classroom? 
    (It’s not about going faster, it’s about going deeper.)
Specific resources, experiences, and activities for developing algebraic intuition and reasoning will be shared, as well as methods of assessing children's understanding of the key aspects of algebra, and methods of differentiating this vital instruction. Teachers will come away from this workshop with a deeper understanding of mathematics in relationship to algebra so that all young students can move forward.

The target audience is primary grades, particularly kindergarten through second grade.

Angela Giglio Andrews recently retired from National-Louis University where she was assistant professor of math education. Angela is a former preschool and kindergarten teacher, teacher of gifted mathematicians, and primary math intervention specialist. She has served on many local, state and national mathematics committees and was an author of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Principles and Standards for School Mathematics document. Angela is also the co-author, with the late Paul Trafton, of the book, Little Kids – Powerful Problem Solvers.
She has received several awards for her teaching including the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics Teaching, The Illinois ASCD Excellence in Kindergarten Teaching Award, and the I.C.T.M. Elementary Mathematics Teacher of the Year Award.  In addition to her work as a teacher, mentor, writer, consultant, speaker, and workshop presenter, Angela has an award winning, interactive mathematics problem solving website,

This workshop will take place at the Latin School of Chicago, 59 West North Boulevard, Chicago. The Latin School is conveniently accessible by public transportation and taxis. Click here for directions and parking information for The Latin School.

Hotel Accommodations
ISACS recommends the following two hotels and has secured special rates based on availability. Attendees must make their own hotel reservations; please contact the hotels directly to make your reservations.

The Seneca Hotel
200 East Chestnut
Chicago, IL 60614

Call 1-800-800-6261 when making reservations for the $109/night plus tax rate for a deluxe room (single/double occupancy). When making reservations, please use the group code "ISACS Math". This rate is based on availability and reservations must be made by Tuesday, November 1, 2011." Click here for directions and parking information for The Seneca Hotel. The Seneca is approximately one mile from The Latin School and one block from Michigan Avenue.

The Hotel Indigo
1244 N. Dearborn Parkway
Chicago, IL 60610

For reservations, please call the Hotel Indigo directly at 312-787-4980, ask for reservations and request the "Independent Schools Association" rate to receive discounted rooms. Rates vary depending on date of stay; space and availability are limited. To book your room online (and receive the ISACS discounted rate), click here The Hotel Indigo is just 3 blocks from the Latin School.

Click here for directions and parking information for The Hotel Indigo.

Registration Fee
  • $175 Member Fee
  • $225 Non-Member Fee
  • First registrant pays full fee, each additional registrant receives a $20 discount
  • Workshop includes lunch

Cancellation Policy
Cancellations must be received in writing to ISACS by emailing 10 business days prior to the event to receive a 50% refund. Cancellations received within 10 days of the event will not receive a refund. Registration may be transferred to another member from the same school. ISACS reserves the right to cancel the workshop for insufficient enrollment. In this case, participants will be notified and given a full refund.

Questions? Please call 312-255-1244.



Member Cost: $175     Non-member Cost: $225


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