Mathematics Education in Peru 

with faculty leader Eric Kuennen

Machu Picchu

Imagine sand surfing and dune buggies in the desert, hiking on an ancient Incan trail in the Andes Mountains to see Machu Picchu, flying over the monumental Nazca Lines, and looking for monkeys in the Amazon Rainforest … This is no ordinary study abroad trip!

While in Lima, we will stay in the beautiful suburb of Miraflores. The first weekend, we will travel down the Pacific Coast, stopping at some beautiful beaches. We will fly over the Nazca Lines, dune buggy, and hang out at a desert oasis.  We will visit a national park and see penguins and sea lions.  We will visit an organic winery, where we will have an authentic Peruvian lunch, with horseback riding, and more! We will spend the last 10 days of the trip traveling throughout Peru. We will fly to Puerto Maldonado on the Madre de Dios River in the Pervian Amazon Rainforest. We will stay in a jungle lodge, visit an indigenous community and school, hike and boat through the rainforest and have excellent opportunities to see monkeys, parrots, and more! Then we will travel through the Andes mountains to Cusco, home of the Incas. In Cusco, we will explore spectacular Incan ruins, visit Andes highlands towns and schools, and hike part of the old Inca trail all the way to Machu Picchu!!

Travel dates May 23-June 13, 2009, (applications due by Friday February 6)

Estimated trip cost is $3500, including airfare, hotel, tuition, transportation, etc.



  

This three-week study tour will focus on Mathematics Education in Peru. Participants will have the opportunity to study the nature of mathematics and mathematical behavior, and theories and issues in the teaching and learning of mathematics. The experiences we have in Peru will provide the opportunity to look at issues in different ways and from a perspective we would not ordinarily be able to have.  We will examine the similarities and differences of education practices in the US and Peru, including teaching philosophy and methodology, teacher preparation and training, and school organization, oversight and funding.

Schools in Peru:
                     
       UWO student teaching math                 Prof. Kuennen                         

   

The study abroad course will focus on (1) what is mathematics and mathematical behavior, (2) how do humans learn mathematics, and (3) how should mathematics be taught?  The experiences we have in Peru will provide the opportunity to look at these questions in different ways and from a perspective we would not ordinarily be able to have.  We will study the nature of mathematics, an analysis of mathematics pedagogy, editorials on mathematics education, and research literature on student learning of elementary and middle grades mathematics. We will also study the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Standards and elementary and middle school mathematics curriculum currently used in the United States. These curricula and standards will be compared and contrasted to the curriculum in Peru. Through field trips to local elementary and middle schools, program participants will experience mathematics education in Peru firsthand. It will not be necessary for program participants to speak Spanish, as we will be have translators, and also be visiting schools where the students learn English. As a part of their coursework, students will be preparing a middle grades curriculum project that will include teaching mathematics in Peruvian middle school classrooms. Further, as a part of our study of mathematical behavior, we will have the opportunity to study the mathematics of the Incas, the great pre-Columbian empire of South America, and we will be able to see Incan mathematics first-hand when we visit important Incan sites at Cusco and Machu Picchu.

 

            


Cusco     Rainforest Lodge     Hiking the Inca Trail



Preliminary Itinerary
May 18- May 22 in Oshkosh; May 23-June 13 in Peru.

 

Week Zero :  In Oshkosh.  We will hold class in Oshkosh on Monday May 18 through Friday May 22. We will lay the foundations for the course in Oshkosh, allowing us to spend our time more efficiently in Peru.

 

Week One:  In Lima.  During the week, have morning classes (2 hours for each course) at University del Pacifico, during which we discuss readings and have guest lectures.  In the afternoons, we will have organized field trips and visit elementary and middle schools around Lima.  Over the weekend, we will travel by bus to see Ica, Paracas and Nasca, where there are cultural, natural and recreational attractions.

 

Week Two: In Lima.  During the week, have morning classes (2 hours for each class) at University del Pacifico, during which we discuss readings and have guest lectures.  In the afternoons, we will visit elementary and middle schools around Lima and students will present in Peruvian classes the lessons they have prepared. Over the weekend, we will leave Lima and begin our tour of Peru. We will fly to Puerto Maldonado on the Madre de Dios River in the Peruvian Amazon Rainforest. We will stay in a jungle lodge, visit an indigenous community and school, hike and boat through the rainforest and have excellent opportunities to see wildlife.

 

Week Three: We continue our tour of Peru, traveling to  Cusco, the ancient capital of the Incan empire in the Andes Mountains. In Cusco, we will explore spectacular Incan ruins, learn about the mathematics of the Incas, visit Andes highlands towns and schools, and hike the Inca trail to the spectacular Machu Picchu. 


  Macaws       Capuchin Monkey    Llamas

 

Past Participant Testimonials:

“Unforgettable and enlightening. It really gave me a better perspective towards life and what I should be thankful for.”

“My favorite part of the trip would be visiting the schools.  I think that going as an education major it really showed me the differences between our school systems.  I also really liked trying the different foods and just being immersed in the different culture.”

 

“I loved teaching the lesson to the Peruvian students. It was an awesome experience to go in front of a class of students that don’t speak your language. That was the first of many times in my life where I will have a student that doesn’t speak English and I will have to learn to communicate and teach the student.”

 

“I enjoyed all of the trips to the schools. Each school was unique and it was interesting seeing the differences in their schools among different areas and economic status. At the schools I really enjoyed sitting in on the math classes. It was interesting watching the teacher teach and the students’ responses. I also enjoyed figuring out their topics and trying to figure out the problems myself.”

 

“It is hard to pick my favorite parts of the trip because I had so much fun.”

 

“The Inca trail and Machu Picchu was phenomenal. Words can't explain how amazing the experience was.”

 

Target Groups:

- Mathematics Minors for Elementary and Middle School Programs
- Mathematics Majors with a Secondary Education Emphasis
-
Masters students and current teachers looking for new experiences or continuing credits
- Global Educator Certificate Program students

The program will be offered every other summer (2009,2011 etc.), though the location may change for future trips.


Useful Links:

My Peru Trip Guide: How to prepare for Peru -- What to Know

Powerpoint Presentation about the trip   
    
             
                                                 
Photos from the June 2007 Study Abroad Trip

UW Oshkosh Office of International Education website for our trip

Participant Registration (OIE)

Lonely Planet Page About Peru  
                                                                                
Map of Peru                                                                                 

    
      



The deadline for application is Friday Feb 6.  This is when you have to say for sure and put some money down.  However, if you feel you can decide earlier, that's advantageous since that may allow financial aid to tell you exactly how much extra aid you're eligible for before the deadline.  Participation is limited, and spaces are allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Visit the UW Oshkosh Office of International Education website for our trip for more details.   Here you can find lots of practical information about studying abroad and more specific information about the Peru trip.  Also, you can visit Jenna Graff of the OIE office in Dempsey 146 with questions about applications, financial aid, planning, etc.


Questions or Comments?  Email Eric KuennenPeter Meyerson or contact the Office of International Education directly.