Teaching

Philosophy

Character development—focused on honesty, integrity, and kindness—and risk-taking form the fabric of my teaching philosophy. As a teacher, I enable learners to become creators of knowledge and critical thinkers willing to welcome uncertainty. To advance this vision, I provide a relaxed atmosphere where every student can enjoy the journey of learning through explorations of the wonders of natural phenomena or the richness of intellectual creations; the latter includes any means of human expression.

My Story

I started teaching in 1997 in New York City. In 1999, I was a teaching assistant at Dartmouth College. In 2001, I was an instructor at The City College of the City University of New York, where I taught my first graduate courses in education and began training teachers. In 2003, I was an adjunct instructor at Columbia University. In 2003, I took a tenure-track assistant professorship at the University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez Campus. After earning tenure and becoming a full professor in 2012, I took a leave of absence in 2013 to explore reviving a small independent school in Mississippi; while it lived, we renamed it MathEcoSpirit Academy. (I love the mission and vision statements!)

I returned to my position in Puerto Rico in 2014, and decided to leave in 2015 to teach at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM). There, I produced two series of short videos.

In North Carolina, I co-founded the Chapel Hill Math Circle at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and founded the Triangle Math Teachers’ Circle at North Carolina State University. On the page of the Triangle Math Teachers’ Circle, you can find some pedagogical blog posts I wrote.

In 2016-2017, I taught at three different prisons in North Carolina, through UNC’s correctional education program.

In 2017, I moved to Georgia to teach at South Gwinnett High School, a Title I school in metro Atlanta. I also work as an educational consultant, more prominently, as the Director of Festivals for the Julia Robinson Mathematics Festival.

In February 2019, I received the 2018 Rosenthal Prize for Innovation and Inspiration in Math Teaching awarded by the National Museum of Mathematics (MoMath).