Saturday, August 7, 2010

EARCOME 5, Tokyo, Japan 19-22 August 2010

EARCOME-5 Fifth East Asian Conference on Mathematics Education. The second conference was held in Singapore in 2002 where SEACME9 (Southeast Asian Conference on Mathematics Education) merged with the East Asian edition to give rise to this series of conference. Subsequently, EARCOME-3 was held in Shanghai and EARCOME-4 in Penang. EARCOME-5 in Japan included a lesson study component.

It seems like there is a plan to alternate the hosting opportunity between a North Asian city and a Southeast Asian city. But because there are fewer North Asian countries, this plan may not be followed strictly. At EARCOME-5, itwas decided that the conference will from now on run on a 3-3-2 years cycles. That way EARCOME and ICME will not happen on the same year.

The next two conferences are in 2013 (Thailand) and in 2015 (The Philippines). Sunsequent editions will be in 2018, 2021, 2023, 2026, 2029 and so on.

I participated in this conference and was part of the Plenary Panel on Excellence in Classroom Practice on 22 August 2010. The panelists includes Dr. Catherine Vistro-Yu (The Philippines), Dr. Kyungmee Park (South Korea), Dr. Ngai Ying Wong (Hong Kong), Dr. Yeap Ban Har (Singapore) and Dr. Masataka Koyama (Japan)



In my presentation, I use (mathematics) education policies, both explicit as well as implicit ones, to construct what is meant by excellence in classroom practice and illustrated my points with examples from Singapore.

The existence of such policies, with the necessary professional development support, coupled with an assessment that demands thinking, forms a coherent system that facilitates teachers bringing such excellence to more classrooms.

Although this is not universal, I am glad to point out that in Singapore, policies actually bring about change in the classroom.