Collab Lab 27: See Math Everywhere

What if Milwaukee students stopped thinking of math as something “I’m not good at” and saw it instead as something much richer?

  • a creative endeavor
  • a way to explore issues they care about
  • a way to see their neighborhood, city, and world from a whole new perspective
  • a place where their interests can drive mastery

What if Milwaukee students started thinking of themselves as mathematicians?

What if Milwaukee students could see math:

  • walking down the street;
  • in the laundromat;
  • in the way games play out at the park, at home, at the stadium;
  • in the design of buildings, neighborhoods, and cities;
  • in the way culture and economics shape their life;
  • in art and music and poetry and dance?

What if Milwaukee students could see math everywhere?

What if Milwaukee came together in 2020 to make this happen?

2020 Vision: See Math Everywhere

Join colleagues from public, private, and charter schools from across greater Milwaukee as well as a bunch of folks from outside of K-12 to explore what this could look like and how we move it forward together.




5:30 – 6:00 Grab something to eat and drink, say hello

6:00 – 6:30 Introductions

6:30- 8:30 Let’s explore how to do this!

Food and beverage will be provided. There is no charge for participation but space is limited!


Participating Organizations

MKE Plays, Silver Spring Neighborhood Center, SHARP Literacy, UWM, Islands of Brilliance, Milwaukee Public Libraries, COA Youth & Family Centers, MSOE, Discovery World, DPI, Marquette University, Secure Futures, The Next Museum, Doors Open Milwaukee…


And for a little inspiration ahead of time…

Public Math – Laundromat

Solving The Math Problem – Subtitled (updated 11.30.17) from YouCubed on Vimeo

Nathalie Miebach – Weather as Data as Art

Collab Lab 12: Middle School Math – What should we be trying?

How would you want to teach math?

“The first thing to understand is that mathematics is an art. The difference between math and the other arts, such as music and painting, is that our culture does not recognize it as such.”

— from A Mathematician’s Lament by Paul Lockhart

Barely half of 3rd graders in Wisconsin are proficient in math. By the time students reach 8th grade, that number is down to less than 40 percent. There are huge racial disparities in these scores.

Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Should we be trying something different?

We’re delighted to have Milwaukee Succeeds join us in hosting a discussion focused middle school math:

  • How can we help effective methods spread?
  • If we wanted to do something different, what would it look like?
  • Where and how could we try something out?
  • What support would teachers need to do so?

Among others, you’ll get a chance to talk with:

Dr. Kevin McLeod, Associate Professor – Department of Mathematical Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Dr. McLeod is a research mathematician and an Associate Professor in the Department of Mathematical Sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM). Dr. McLeod has long had an interest in good mathematics teaching. He was a co-PI for the Milwaukee Mathematics Partnership grant, and has worked extensively with MPS teachers for several years, taking an active role in planning the mathematical content for the coursework for MPS Mathematics Teacher Leaders, and assisting with the development and alignment to standards of district-developed classroom assessments.


Shannon Olson – UCC Acosta Middle School

Shannon Olson with UCC Accosta’s student built boat

UCC Acosta Middle School is a technology and skilled-trades focused charter school that offers its students Project Lead the Way Pre-Engineering curriculum, blended learning methods, including project based learning, and a Genius Hours where students are able to follow their passions. This spring, Shannon’s students built and a launched a boat in collaboration with All Hands Boatworks.


8:30 – 9:00 am: Have a cup of coffee, say hello

9:00 – 9:30 am: Introductions, ideas/examples from Math Circles, Project Based Learning

9:30 – 10:45 am: What would be useful to try, what might stand in the way, how might we move forward anyway.

10:45 – 11:00 am: Where to we go from here?


There is no charge for participation but space is limited


Special thanks to Milwaukee Succeeds for hosting this session with us!


The Collab Lab will be held in the innovation space at Ward 4, 333 North Plankinton Avenue, Milwaukee, WI. Space provided courtesy of The Commons.