Supporting Children’s Mathematical Development Stories from TK through 3rd Grade Educators

This panel presentation will feature five agencies who implemented early mathematics professional development through the California Early Math Initiative. Panel members will share highlights from their implementation plans and discuss recommendations for similar organizations interested in building capacity of educators in their local communities.

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Patricia Rucker is a CTA Legislative Advocate in the areas of professional rights and responsibilities; assessment and testing; adult alternative, career & technical education and federal issues related to Elementary and Secondary Education. She has also worked for CTA as an Instruction and Professional Development Consultant: serving as a resource to CTA staff in the development of chapter training programs; providing advice to leaders and members on problems involving CTA policy, member rights and organization and communications.

Before her work with the California Teachers Association, Patricia taught elementary school and high school English in Sacramento, CA

· Teacher, Del Paso Heights School District, Sacramento, California

· Instructor, CSU Sacramento Academic Talent Search, Sacramento, California

· Lecturer, CSU Sacramento – School of Education, Sacramento, California

· Instructor, UC Davis School of Medicine SASP Project, Davis California

· Research Consultant, Far West Labs, San Francisco, CA

Patricia Rucker

Ryan Kurada is the Curriculum Coordinator for Transitional Kindergarten (TK) at the Sonoma County Office of Education. He is passionate about making learning relevant, meaningful, and interesting for all students. Prior to his current role, Ryan taught TK, Kindergarten, and 1st grade at University Elementary School in Northern California, where he also developed their school-wide project-based learning program. He spent time in Reggio Emilia, Italy studying their world-renowned educational approach to early childhood education. He is currently collaborating with the Exploratorium Tinkering Studio in developing STEAM-focused professional development opportunities for educators. Ryan has an M.A. in Education with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education and a B.F.A. in Art Education from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. He has been a guest speaker at numerous conferences including the U.S. Department of Education Teach to Lead Summit, National Science Teaching Association Conference, and the California STEAM Symposium.

Ryan Kurada

Tracy Doverspike is a National Board Certified Kindergarten teacher and a member of the Instructional Leadership Corps. She brings thirty years of classroom experience and a love for integrating math across the curriculum. Mrs. Doverspike teaches kindergarten for the Alvord Unified School District and has a new math blog with The Early Math Project. She enjoys sharing engaging activities to build early math skills.

Tracy Doverspike

Eunice Munro has been working in the field of early learning and care for 30 years. During this time, she has held a variety of roles that have provided her with great experiences; she has been a Lead Teacher, an Assistant Director, Center Director, Program Director, Accreditation Manager, Coach, Trainer, Senior Program Specialist, and currently Director of Early Education programs and services with the San Diego County Office of Education. She has experience working with a variety of programs such as Head Start, Private and Non-Profit Centers, Local Education Agencies, College Labs, and Family Child Care Providers. In her current role, she oversees the local implementation of QCC quality projects. Eunice holds a Bachelor's Degree in Child Development and a Master's Degree in Teaching with a specialization in Early Childhood Education. 


Eunice Munro

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Daniel Mendoza currently works as an Early Childhood Specialist for the Placer County Office of Education (PCOE) as well as an Adjunct Professor in the Human Development/ECE department at Sierra College in Rocklin CA. Daniel previously worked as a preschool teacher and site supervisor for over a decade for PCOE, serving State Preschool and Head Start classrooms. Daniel presents various workshops for professional development on a variety of early learning domains, primarily Math and Art. He is an advisory board member for CA First 5 Literacy (Placer County), Placer Arts League, and Sierra College Early Childhood Education Committee. He also serves as a mentor for the Family Friends and Neighbor (FFN) program and helps to facilitate the PCOE Father Literacy Group.

Daniel Mendoza,


As an educator for life, Michelle continues to contribute to her community through her work, research, neighborhood, and family. Michelle has been in education her entire life as a secondary Math and Dance teacher for 20 years and now supports all the districts in Alameda County as a Program Manager of Mathematics.

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Michelle Lau

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Jill Johnson

Jill Johnson has worked in the field of education & early education for 30 years. She earned a Bachelor's degree in Child Development & Master's Degree in Education, with an emphasis in Educational Technology. Jill began her career at the Child Development Center at Cal State Fullerton where her love for early care and education began. Post-college, Jill landed her “dream job” and worked as a Child Life Therapist at Children's Hospital Orange County (CHOC), and her life was forever changed. At CHOC she developed a deeper meaning for what is required to serve others, especially those in their darkest hour.

Jill started her career at the Riverside County Office of Education in 1995 working with after-school programs and supervising college staff to run the programs, and then into the field of school and community safety. She longed for something more and moved into higher-level management by becoming a grant manager for a $19,000,000 federal grant working with 19 area school districts. The challenge of overseeing multiple programs across multiple systems fostered her love of leadership and systems development. For the past 15 years, she has worked as a Coordinator with the Early Care and Education (ECE) programs and Resource & Referral - bringing professional development opportunities to early learning educators, support to children, families, and providers, and engaging the community with ECE programs. 

Claudia Meza, is the Sr. Program Manager for the Early Intervention Team at EPU. Claudia has worked alongside families for 13 years. She has been part of the Early Intervention field for 9 years. Claudia  loves being able to support young children and their families through this journey. This work has been some of the most impactful work she have been a part of. She gets to celebrate with the families they work with, the smallest achievements to some pretty big milestones. Outside of work Claudia enjoys expressing herself and expressing her creativity. She spends time painting, drawing, making jewelry. Claudia also enjoys the outdoors that helps heal her soul.

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Claudia Meza