Inspired by Teaching
In 1971, brothers Peter and Steven Rasmussen drew from their teaching experience to create workbooks that would help students who were struggling in mathematics learn the basics and build a foundation for success. With those first Key to...® workbooks, Peter and Steven launched Key Curriculum Press, which went on to publish innovative math books by classroom teacher authors for the next two decades.
In 1989, we published Discovering Geometry® by Michael Serra, followed by The Geometer's Sketchpad® Dynamic Geometry® software by Nick Jackiw in 1991. Both Discovering Geometry and Sketchpad have transformed mathematics education in the United States and internationally. In 1996, we published an NSF-funded curriculum project, the Interactive Mathematics Program®, which was one of the first curriculum projects to fully embrace a thematic and integrated approach to mathematics as recommended in the NCTM Standards and Principles.
Embracing Technology in Mathematics
Throughout the 1990s, we continued to develop materials that incorporated graphing calculators, which were becoming more readily available in schools. We published the first textbooks to use a data-exploration approach to algebra, and developed Paul Foerster’s advanced mathematics textbooks as he was incorporating graphing-calculator assisted explorations. In 1996, we became affiliated with Springer, one of the world's largest scientific publishers, and embarked on a research and development phase that resulted in the full Discovering Mathematics and Advanced Mathematics series.
In 1998, KCP Technologies was launched to conduct educational technology research, which led to further development of Sketchpad as well as the creation of our dynamic data software: Fathom®Dynamic Data, and TinkerPlots®Dynamic Data Exploration, in partnership with the University of Massachusetts. KCP Technologies continues to develop new educational software through NSF-funded research on the effective use of new technologies, such as the iPad and interactive whiteboards.
In August 2011, we made the strategic decision to sell our basal textbooks in order to re-focus our energy and expertise on the rapidly growing frontier of digital mathematics learning tools. To support those who joined us on this new digital adventure, we expanded our extensive professional development programs around our technology and the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. We also released Sketchpad Explorer™ for the iPad, providing yet another environment for exploring dynamic mathematics.
In August 2012, Key joined forces with McGraw-Hill Education to further expand our reach in the market and the investment in our technology. McGraw-Hill's strong presence in the STEM disciplines and across K-12 provided an excellent match for Key's suite of technology tools. The teams at Key, KCP Technologies, and McGraw-Hill Education are excited about the potential of our combined efforts to create interesting, effective, and fun offerings for educators and students alike. We look forward to developing not only the next generation of mathematics tools and technologies, but also the curriculum and training to help teachers and students use them powerfully.