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A Handbook of Classroom Practices

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By: Valerie Partridge


  • All students will be able to identify’ career areas which are nontraditional for their gender.
  • All students will be able to identify women (or men if they are underrepresented) who are leaders and achievers in the particular core content curriculum areas.

 GRADE LEVEL: Middle School and High School, Mathematics

 OBJECTIVES: The students will:

  1. preview various careers involving mathematics
  2. see women in nontraditional roles in a dozen different careers.
  3. see the necessity of mathematics in various careers
  4. listen to interviews with people who use mathematics to meet a wide variety of our nations needs.
  5. utilize critical thinking skills.

 TIME: There are 12 videos, each is 15 minutes in length. It is best to show one of these videos one morning each week over the course of 3 months. After each video, have a discussion about the video and the particular career that has been highlighted.

MATERIALS: The set of 12 "Futures" videos, hosted by Jaime Escalante. The series is available for purchase from PBS Elementary/Secondary Services. 1-800-424-7963.


  1. The teachers guide, which comes with the video series, has a written synopsis of each video, a vocabulary review, and critical questions related to the information presented in the video.
  2. After watching the video it would be up to the individual teacher to plan various ways to discuss the information that has been presented.

EXTENDED ACTIVITIES: The teacher’s guide contains multiple suggestions for related extension activities for each video.

ASSESSMENT: See teacher’s guide for suggestions.

HINTS: Prior to presenting this video series, have the students view an edited version of the movie "Stand and Deliver." This film, which has been on TV, is based on the real-life story of Jaime Escalante and his success with teaching Calculus to inner-city students and preparing them for the AP Calculus exam. After seeing his story in film, the students really enjoyed seeing him host this "Futures" video series.

I have shown the videos on Friday mornings. This has worked quite well.


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