Education Week has an interesting article about the uncertainties about the skills that are needed to be a successful mathematics teacher. The point of departure for the article is the recent report by the National Mathematics Advisory Panel in the U.S. The report has several suggestions about the curriculum, cognition, instruction, etc. When it comes to the skills that are needed to become a good mathematics teacher, though, the answers were fewer:
One of the panel members, Deborah Loewenberg Ball, was interviewed in the article, and she believed that it was in the area of improving teaching that the emphasis should be set in the years to come:
There appears to be a lot of work and research to do within this area. There is much agreement that the teacher is important, and the quality of the math teacher has an impact on the students’ results.
So, the question that Ball and her team has focused a lot on in their research still remains important for researchers in the future: What kind of knowledge is it that teachers need?