Eastern GEAR UP team members and 16 local math and
science teachers attend T3 International Conference


As Oklahoma teachers began their Spring Break activities, twenty–one Eastern Oklahoma State College GEAR UP staff and partner school teachers attended the 2015 Teachers Teaching with Technology (T3) International Conference in Fort Worth, Texas, as guests of Texas Instruments. The 27th Annual Conference featured over 375 workshops, the largest event for math and science professional development. Attendees found new ideas and proven solutions to enhance curriculum for standards–based learning and STEM, deepen content knowledge and explore activities that engage students in math, science and engineering practices; accelerate student achievement through the effective use of TI educational technology, math activities and science simulations; and improve instruction through dynamic sessions led by some of the top educators in the world.

Members of Eastern’s GEAR UP staff attending were Project Director Linda Morgan; Professional Development Coordinator Debbie Walters; Assistant Professional Development Coordinator Stacy Burmeier; Education Coordinators Melissa Juarez and Kamy Patterson. Partner school teachers were Shana Grubis, Canadian; Patti Brannon, Crowder; Angela White, Crowder; Cydney Meglemre, Keota; Billi Hass, McAlester; Amanda Jones, McAlester; Deward Palmer, McCurtain; Tonya McKnight, Moyers; SueAnn Vaughn, Moyers; Liz Belcher, Panama; William Leaptrot, Panama; Cindy Tobey, Panama; Melissa Darneal, Spiro; Marty Darneal, Spiro; Gordon Bockus, Wilburton; and Lisa Goddard, Wilburton.

“This was a wonderful opportunity,” said GEAR UP Project Director Linda Morgan, “for not only our GEAR UP staff, but sixteen of our local math and science teachers to attend the premier international conference and learn from the best in the world. We are so appreciative to Texas Instruments for providing this opportunity.”

The opening general session featured keynote speaker Dr. Jo Boaler, the driving force behind a spirited movement to revolutionize math teaching and learning in the United States and beyond. A professor of Mathematics Education at Stanford University, Dr. Boaler has published seven books, appeared in the leading peer–reviewed journals in the field and co–founded YouCubed, which provides math–education resources for students, parents and teachers.

On Pi Day (3.14.15), special events were held throughout the day to celebrate! Pi Day is celebrated on March 14th (3/14) around the world. Pi (Greek letter “π”) is the symbol used in mathematics to represent a constant—the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter—which is approximately 3.14159. Pi has been calculated to over one trillion digits beyond its decimal point. As an irrational and transcendental number, it will continue infinitely without repetition or pattern. While only a handful of digits are needed for typical calculations, Pi’s infinite nature makes it a fun challenge to memorize, and to computationally calculate more and more digits.


Morgan, Walters and Burmeier attended the Administrator Academy while Juarez, Patterson and GEAR UP teachers attended various workshops. They also attended a TI–sponsored GEAR UP reception on Thursday evening.

The closing session featured Emily Calandrelli, a recent MIT graduate who represents the future of students in the classroom. Co–producer and host of FOX’s “Xploration Outer Space,” Ms. Calandrelli is passionate about promoting scientific literacy and getting students, especially young women, interested in STEM.

In 2011, Eastern received a seven–year, $12.6 million federal GEAR UP grant and is in its four year of implementation.


Caption: Members of the Eastern Oklahoma State College GEAR UP delegate met for the GEAR UP reception before the conference began.

Photo ID:
Kneeling in front—Lisa Goddard, Wilburton; Front row—Sandra Hocutt, TI MathForward Instructor; Tonya McKnight, Moyers; Shana Grubis, Canadian; Cindy Tobey, Panama; Stacy Burmeier, GEAR UP Assistant Professional Development Coordinator; Cydney Meglemre, Keota; Linda Morgan, GEAR UP Project Director; Amanda Jones, McAlester; Billi Hass, McAlester; Back row—Kamy Patterson, GEAR UP Education Coordinator, SueAnn Vaughan, Moyers; Melissa Juarez, GEAR UP Education Coordinator; Deward Palmer, McCurtain; Gordon Bockus, Wilburton; Melissa Darneal, Spiro; Marty Darneal, Spiro; Debbie Walters, GEAR UP Professional Development Coordinator; and Doug Roberts, TI MathForward Instructor

Not pictured–Patti Brannon, Crowder; Angela White, Crowder; Liz Belcher, Panama; William Leaptrot, Panama