Brian R. Lawler

--a bit about me

I am a first semester doctoral student in Math Education at the University of Georgia. Previously, I earned a Master's of Education specializing in Curriculum and Instruction from California State University at Dominguez Hills. My undergraduate degree is from Colorado State University. While there I earned a B.S. in Mathematics (that always strikes me as funny! :-)

I have just relocated to Athens, GA from Long Beach, CA. California was warm all year round; the sun shined most days. On those hotter summer days, you could count on a cool breeze from the beach. I certainly was spoiled living three blocks from the ocean. But I'll tell you what - it is hot up here in Georgia! Sweaty hot. You know how they say things are slower in the south? I understand why: if you move or think much faster, you just get too darn hot.

While I was in Long Beach, I taught mathematics at the California Academy of Math and Science. CAMS is a public high school located in Carson, California and drawing students from Carson, Long Beach, Hawthorne, Torrance, Inglewood, Lynwood, Compton, and South-Central Los Angeles. The school's mission is to increase the number of traditionally underrepresented students in the fields of mathematics and science. While there, I taught several grade levels of their core mathematics courses using the Interactive Mathematics Program as a curriculum. Additionally, I taught a few elective math courses, the most exciting of which I began developing during my final year there. I titled it Mathematical Modeling and System Dynamics. Ask me more about this any time, as I said it was a fun course and the students did some amazing mathematics and mathematical thinking. The incredible diversity of students in every imaginable sense made my time in California was a great learning experience. They were a tremendous group to work with.

Prior to Long Beach, I lived in Denver, Colorado. Upon graduating college, I taught mathematics at Eaglecrest High School. Here is where my passion for education emerged. My tremendous colleagues and students opened my eyes to the enjoyment and challenges of learning. Mathematics became so much more than the textbook-driven symbol-manipulation that I had become used to. I discovered people's mathematical learning was an incredibly unique and personal endeavor that grew from interactions with others, interactions with self, and the moderation that bridges the understanding and sense-making between the two. Here, I saw personal freedom and expression realized. I became aware that public school education has the potential and obligation to be the guardian of democracy and justice.

These experiences are what has brought me to UGA. Wish me luck!


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Last revised: December 28, 2000

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