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CoMath Update for December 19, 2023

Another month, another big CoMath Update! There are a lot of announcements to wrap up 2023, and I look forward to seeing you again in 2024.

30 Years of CoMath

The CoMath listserv began as a computing project in 1993 that allowed teachers to communicate on a research project. That email group grew into a resource for sharing about ideas and activities for math education, and CDE began hosting the email list in 2003. It was--and still is--Colorado's original social network for math education. My knowledge of the history is incomplete, and so this list of people will also be incomplete, but I want to recognize and thank the following for their contributions over the past 30 years:

  • Dr. Pat Burns and Dr. David Zachmann, for leading the original supercomputing project and hosting the first email list,
  • Tom Hibbs and Glenn Bruckhart, who helped pivot the email list to "CoMath" as a statewide-community of math teachers, and
  • Mattye Pollard-Cole, Melissa Colsman, and Mary Pittman, my predecessors at CDE who all moderated, maintained, and contributed to the CoMath listserv.

The CoMath listserv continues and every member of the list is welcome to continue the tradition by emailing When people email me with questions like, "Do you know of any districts that are using X?" Or, "Do you know of any teachers who would be interested in Y?" my response is, "That sounds like a question to ask CoMath." The norms here are still the same from when I joined CDE about 8 years ago: (1) Don't use CoMath to sell things or advance your business interests, and (2) Try to keep your contributions more informational rather than conversational. I know we now live in a world where teachers literally have dozens of ways to reach out online to other teachers, but don't forget CoMath when your question, idea, or event is looking for a Colorado-, education-, and math-specific audience.

Colorado Academic Accelerator Program Grant

The new Colorado Academic Accelerator Program grant seeks to establish or expand STEM-focused community learning centers. CO-AAP applications will open on Friday, Dec. 15, and are due by 4 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 15. Register here for CO-AAP office hours to learn more about planning, implementation, and submitting your application. Details on additional office hours, a virtual training webinar as well as for application resources and sample materials will be posted on the CO-AAP webpage as they become available. For more information email Jozette Martinez at and Rachel Messersmith at or call 720-467-0493.

Feedback Requested for the Format and Organization of the Colorado Academic Standards

In an effort to proactively seek input about areas for improvement, the Office of Standards and Instructional Support would like to hear your thoughts about the current format for the Colorado Academic Standards (CAS) and the organization of our standards website. Please give us your input using this optional survey. The results will help our office tailor professional learning about the current standards and consider if there might be a need to revise the current format. This survey will remain open through February 16, 2024. We are hoping to hear from teachers of mathematics about this so that all content areas are represented in the data.

Please note that we are not asking for input on the actual content of the CAS for any content areas. Also, please be assured that any changes to the format of the CAS would only be applied when a content area goes through review and revision. The Colorado Academic Standards is revised on a rotating schedule with one third of the content areas reviewed every two years. The approval of the next revision of mathematics standards is expected from the State Board of Education in June of 2026. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to SIS Director, Samantha Messier, at


Do you know an excellent K-6 teacher of math, science, computer science, or STEM? Nominate them for a PAEMST award! The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching are the highest honors bestowed by the United States government specifically for math and other STEM fields. The awards were established by Congress in 1983 and awardees receive a certificate signed by the President of the United States; an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. for ceremonies, professional development, and networking; and a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation.  Nominations this year for K-6 educators close on January 8, 2024.


The Colorado Council of Teachers of Mathematics (CCTM) is continuing its Teaching for Thinking book study with sessions on January 11 and January 16. Visit the book study web page for details and links to register for a book study date.

Save the Date! CCTM will be holding its next in-person event on June 13-14, 2024. Many details to come!


The Colorado Math Leaders (CML) will continue with their book study with Chapter 3 of Productive Math Struggle at 5 pm on Thursday, January 18th. The next regular meeting of CML will be at 12:30 on Tuesday, January 9th.

Colorado Group Calculus Competition

Peak to Peak Charter School is hosting the first Colorado Group Calculus Competition to help students prepare for AP Calculus AB and BC exams. Teams of 4 can compete. There can be more than 1 team from each school. Middle or high schoolers can compete from any grade level.

  • Format: 10 questions of varying difficulty that are solved as a group.
  • Prizes for winners and certificates for all.
  • When: Tuesday, April 2nd, 6-8 pm
  • Where: Peak to Peak Charter School, 800 Merlin Drive Lafayette 80026
  • How to register:  If interested, math teachers please use this link to register:
  • Register by: March 25, 2024
  • Contact: Anita Chakraborty-Spotts (

Computer Science Standards Feedback

CDE is seeking public feedback about the draft of Colorado's academic standards for computer science. Feedback can be submitted until January 5, 2024.

Colorado Math Awards Mini-Grants

Each year since 1985, thousands of students across the country voluntarily take a 25-question, 40-minute multiple-choice exam in middle school mathematics offered by American Mathematics Competitions, a program of the Mathematical Association of America. The AMC 8 exam, open to any student in grade 8 or below, is designed to develop students’ problem-solving skills and interest in mathematics.

The AMC 8 exam is hosted locally by middle schools and other educational organizations with physical premises for on-site test-taking. The exam can be given to students anytime during the week of January 18-24. The AMC 8 website describes the exam in more detail, and provides registration information, a teacher’s manual, and other resources for hosting the AMC 8 exam.

Top Colorado students in the AMC 8 exam and other national math contests will be honored by Colorado Math Awards (CMA) at a reception and program at the University of Denver on Tuesday, May 7th, 2024.

To encourage greater participation in the AMC 8 exam by middle schools and other testing sites that primarily serve rural, Black, or Indigenous students and students of color, CMA is offering a limited number of $200 grants to help defray the costs of registration and other resources for teachers and students. Preference will be given to those schools and testing sites that have not administered the AMC 8 exam before. These mini-grants are partially funded by Equity Learning, a nonprofit organization founded by Colorado students, committed to building opportunities, bolstering communities, and bridging gaps for youth and beyond.

To learn more about Colorado Math Awards and the AMC 8 mini-grant offer, visit the new CMA website at Please share this announcement with others who may be interested.

Research Project Opportunity with the Math Learning Center and Johns Hopkins

In collaboration with Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Research and Reform in Education, the Math Learning Center is seeking district partners for a research project involving our newest edition of Bridges in Mathematics Third Edition. As you may have heard, our latest edition of Bridges in Mathematics is designed to promote deep understanding of mathematical concepts, proficiency with key skills, and the ability to solve complex problems. During Bridges instruction, students are actively engaged as capable mathematical sensemakers, drawing upon their knowledge bases to support learning. Bridges also supports teachers in delivering engaging, rigorous, standards-based instruction while incorporating equitable and effective teaching practices.

The goals of the research project are to:

  • Examine short-term and long-term program impacts of Bridges on student learning
  • Understand educator implementation of Bridges
  • Refine professional learning experiences for Bridges educators

Benefits of the project include:

  • Bridges curriculum kits for participating K-5 classrooms at no cost
  • Professional learning workshops at no cost
  • Stipends for teacher participating in research activities
  • Opportunities to give input on data collection instruments
  • Sharing of findings through reports or presentations

To be eligible, districts must:

  • Serve a diverse student population
  • Have at least 13 elementary schools
  • Are not currently using Bridges or Number Corner

Interested districts can learn more about the research project by completing the form at or by contacting MLC’s Director of Research, Emily Saxton, at

Upcoming NCTM Events

At NCTM's annual meeting, they announced some events to watch for in 2024:

Managing Your CoMath Subscription

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