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Mike Flynn is the director of Mathematics Leadership programs at Mount Holyoke College, where he runs the Master of Arts in Mathematics Teaching program and leads a wide variety of professional learning opportunities for teachers, teacher-leaders, coaches, administrators, and staff-developers. This work connects him with educators from around the world who are interested in the learning and teaching of mathematics. Mike also teaches the elementary mathematics, science, and technology methods course for undergraduates in the teacher licensure program.
Mike’s latest work in higher education centers on creating more interactive and engaging online learning. He designed the dynamic hybrid learning model that blends on-campus and online students for live, interactive learning in mathematics. He also created the Virtual Math Professional Learning Community (#VMathPLC), connecting teachers and math coaches to study current and engaging topics in math education.
Mike is an active member of the National Council for Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). He is an author and editor for the Problem Solvers Problems department for NCTM’sTeaching Children Mathematics journal. In this role, he creates and reviews math tasks for publication in the journal. He also serves on the NCTM Regional Conference Planning Committee for the 2017 Orlando conference. Mike, along with his colleagues Dan Meyer and Zachary Champagne, created and continue to host Shadow Con, a teacher-led miniconference at NCTM annual meetings.
Prior to this work he taught second grade at the William E. Norris Elementary School in Southampton, Massachusetts, for fourteen years. This is where he met his colleague and mentor, Anne Marie O’Reilly, who introduced him to the power of professional learning in mathematics through TERC and Mount Holyoke College. She also encouraged him to participate in the field test of the new Investigations in Number, Data, and Space curriculum. This decision shaped Mike’s entire career pathway.
The three-year project included many professional learning opportunities with some of the most knowledgeable and influential leaders in elementary math education. These experiences greatly impacted Mike’s classroom practice and transformed his approach to teaching mathematics. Mike then became an Investigations workshop leader, supporting teachers from around the country in implementing the curriculum in their classrooms.
Over the years, Mike established himself as a teacher-leader at the state and national level by developing and providing professional development seminars in the areas of mathematics, science, and technology. He was involved in numerous grant-funded research projects focused on the mathematical thinking of students. He was a contributing author to many publications for teachers, and videos of his classroom teaching are used throughout the country for professional development.
Mike’s dedication to his students and the education profession earned him some significant honors and recognitions. He is the 2008 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year, a recipient of a 2009 National Education Association Award for Teaching Excellence, and a 2010 recipient of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics Teaching.
Mike lives in Massachusetts with his wife and four children. He enjoys traveling with his family and discovering new adventures with them. He also enjoys playing guitar, painting, and photography.
In Beyond Answers: Exploring Mathematical Practices with Young Children, author Mike Flynn provides teachers with a clear and deep sense of the Standards for Mathematical Practice and shares ideas on how to best implement them in K-2 classrooms.
Each chapter is dedicated to one of the eight common core standards. Using examples from his own teaching and vignettes from many other K–2 teachers, Flynn does the following:
Invites you to break the cycle of teaching math procedurally
Demonstrates what it means for children to understand—not just do—math
Explores what it looks like when young children embrace the important behaviors espoused by the practices
The book’s extensive collection of stories from K–2 classroom provides readers with glimpses of classroom dialogue, teacher reflections, and examples of student work. Focus questions at the beginning of each vignette help you analyze the examples and encourage further reflection.
Beyond Answers is a wonderful resource that can be used by individual teachers, study groups, professional development staff, and in math methods courses.
Mathematizing Children’s Literature
Sparking Connections, Joy, and Wonder Through Read-Alouds and Discussion