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A headline reads, “Two out of three Americans owned a smartphone in 2015.” Does that mean two out of every group of three Americans? Is it possible to have a group of Americans who all own smartphones?  Adults encounter ratios and proportions all the time in news or media statistics, estimates of risk, shopping for the best deal, creating mixtures and recipes, and countless other daily activities. The ability to reason about these numerical relationships develops over a long period of time and through deliberate exploration of the mathematics involved. Language teachers can provide opportunities for students to encounter and expand their ability to reason with ratios in real life contexts.

Mathematizing ESOL III: Integrating Ratio Reasoning is a course for English language teachers who want to deepen their own conceptual understanding of ratios and proportions and to learn strategies for helping students build ratio reasoning skills. This course is for participants who have successfully completed Mathematizing ESOL I


    This professional development activity/course is designed for:

  • Any ESOL instructor interested in integrating math into his or her language acquisition classroom. No prior math background is needed; however, instructors must have successfully completed Mathematizing ESOL I. (Instructors no longer need to have taken Mathematizing ESOL II to take Mathematizing ESOL III.)

The online course is divided into five core lessons on ratios and proportions. Each lesson contains math practice activities, discussion forums, and lesson ideas for adult ESOL classes. Participants are required to read course content, complete activities and related documents, respond to discussion prompts and read the responses of other participants.  

Upon successful completion of the course, all participants may download a certificate of completion.  

Optional: Participants may earn 18 PDPs by completing a culminating project: the creation (with the guide of a rubric) of a lesson plan for ESOL students that integrates conceptual understanding and application of proportional reasoning, and incorporates the key elements of each lesson covered in this course as a final project. Complete requirement details for earning PDPs are available from the facilitator(s).  

This course runs over 5 weeks. The estimated time to complete the course is 18 hours (not including the optional final project).  

For more information, please contact Sherry Soares at

    Learning Objectives

    Upon completion of this professional development activity/course, you will be able to:

  • Identify contexts that involve ratios and proportions that would make sense in an ESOL classroom and use in creating activities/lessons
    Explain what a ratio is and is not, and whether ratio reasoning is appropriate in a situation
    Connect different types of mathematical comparisons to language structures
    Explore the different multiplicative relationships in a proportion
    Use concrete strategies to help students reason about ratios
    Identify different ways of expressing ratios and how these can be used to persuade
    Differentiate activities with open-ended math questions for ESOL learners
Presenter(s) / Facilitator(s)

Mathematizing ESOL I 

End Date

United States

PD Center
SABES Mathematics and Adult Numeracy Curriculum and Instruction PD Center
Topic Area
ESOL/English Language Learner
Mathematics and Adult Numeracy
Close Date