Higinio Dominguez, assistant professor in the Department of Teacher Education, was recently honored with two awards for his collaborative projects to improve mathematics education, particularly for bilingual and immigrant students.
In November 2014, Dominguez received the 2013-14 MSU Service-Learning and Civic Engagement Award for his work with the Lutheran Social Services of Michigan. The project, which Dominguez calls a response to the crises of school-aged children crossing the U.S.-Mexico border, entails visiting one of the Lutheran Social Services’ non-traditional schools for students new to the U.S. in Lansing at least once per month.
“I teach mathematics lessons that explore the beauty and power of mathematical concepts,” he said.
He also invites these children and their teachers to attend his courses at MSU so that his students can experience teaching mathematics to students who are unlike them.
In addition to helping the local children focus on mathematics instead of the concern of being separated from their families, Dominguez also hopes that the project inspires his graduate students to broaden their interests and see possibilities for dissertation work.
The award, which College of Education Professor Angela Calabrese Barton also received, is given annually to individuals who demonstrate innovative and/or sustained effort in the area of academic, curricular or co-curricular service learning or civic engagement that is linked with the missions of their college.
In addition, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics honored both Dominguez and Melissa Adams, a fifth-grade bilingual teacher, for their article “Más o Menos: Exploring Estimation in a Bilingual Classroom.” The article was published in the August issue of the journal, Teaching Children Mathematics.
For this annual award, NCTM rates research-based articles in each of their three practitioners journals on criteria ranging from timeliness to applicability.