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Geoff Krall is a math and school development coach for the New Tech Network, supporting teachers, administrators, and districts as they transform classrooms into vibrant learning communities. He taught high school math in Texas, the last few years of which were under the New Tech model that emphasizes inquiry, collaboration, communication, and real-world connections. Geoff helped pioneer Problem-Based Learning in the network, which has become the predominant pedagogical approach there and is gaining traction in the greater math community.
Wanting to try something new, he moved to Fort Collins, Colorado in 2008 to obtain a master’s degree in Atmospheric Science at Colorado State University. It was also a good excuse to be closer to mountains. Throughout his bird walk into the study of hurricanes, he stayed connected with math education, consulting with the Buck Institute for Education and continuing work with the New Tech Network. He began blogging about math instruction during his master’s program, merging his passion for student-centered math lessons with the academic rigor of a hard science program and interweaving his unique voice, creativity, and humor along the way. You can read more about his approach to math and other educational topics atemergentmath.com.
After obtaining his master’s degree in 2011, he joined New Tech Network full time as a coach, where he’s had the opportunity to travel to hundreds of schools across the country to support and learn from math educators. He’s also been a part of several design teams including those focused on assessment, inquiry, systemic improvement, and other aspects that are key to a complex educational ecosystem. A regular at math conferences, you can often find him speaking at math-related events, which have included NCTM’s ShadowCon in 2017. He continues to live and play in Fort Collins with his wife, two children, four cats, and varying numbers of chickens.
During his years working as an instructional coach for a national network of schools, Geoff Krall had the chance to witness several inspirational moments when math class comes alive for middle or high school students--when it is challenging but also fun, creative, and interactive. In Necessary Conditions: Teaching Secondary Math with Academic Safety, Quality Tasks, and Effective Facilitation, Krall documents the essential ingredients that produce these sorts of moments on a regular basis and for all students. They are Academic Safety, Quality Tasks, and Effective Facilitation.
Academic Safety: Krall implements equitable classroom experiences that help fight stigmas associated with race and gender in schools. This allows students to feel socially and emotionally secure while nurturing their identities as mathematicians and increasing engagement during classroom discussions
Quality Tasks: Teachers can adapt or create dynamic, student-centered lessons that break down math into small, manageable sections, removing the frustrations felt by students who aren't considered "math people"
Effective Facilitation: This book shows how to incorporate teaching moves and math routines designed for engagement, persistence, and interactivity. Teachers can allow students to explore safely while maintaining consistent classroom expectations
"My work as a math instructional coach for a network of schools has afforded me the unique opportunity to visit exceptional teachers across the country, documenting their tasks, teaching moves, and academically safe learning environments. You’ll experience dispatches from these effective classrooms in which we’ll observe how teachers attend to all three elements that make up the ecosystem.”
-- Geoff Krall from his book, Necessary Conditions
Mathematizing Children’s Literature
Sparking Connections, Joy, and Wonder Through Read-Alouds and Discussion