Part of what makes Jennifer McCalla’s math classes so successful, is her emphasis on math’s direct relationship with her students’ futures. The other part is the exceptional way she delivers knowledge. At Normandy High School in Parma, OH, McCalla gives her students the tools to excel in math, as well as the understanding of why it’s important to do so. McCalla makes every effort to show her students that math plays a critical role in daily living. She takes her students to a local symposium on women in math where they interact with successful career women in mathematics professions. She designed a “Hollywood box office” inside her classroom where students bought tickets and evaluated data on ticket sales. To make sure her curriculum is aligned realistically with state standards, McCalla partners with Michigan State University and reviews syllabi for lower-division math classes. AP calculus average scores at Normandy high are 4.47 out of 5, and its students have the highest math scores in the district. The entire math department achieved over 93% proficiency on the 2008-09 graduation exam. As chair of the math department, real learning and real results seem to be McCalla’s specialties.
1995 University of Pittsburgh, B.S.