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Make Math Moments Academy Forums Community Discussion Water Cooler Getting others on board

  • Sonya Cook

    Member
    March 21, 2020 at 2:09 pm

    Pat, after looking at your post, I’ve decided that I need to change my own goal, or at least add one. I not a math lead, but I am the oldest of the math teachers; I have you beat by 18 years! I teach the middle school math classes at my school, and I’m taking it upon myself to try to help our staff grow together to provide the best possible learning experience for our students. At the middle school level, I see so many students who struggle with math. They need opportunities to develop their numeracy skills, to get their hands on manipulatives, to gain concrete understanding of the procedures they’ve learned, to discover math. Before the coronavirus-forced closure, MobyMax was a mainstay in almost all of the elementary classrooms along with student workbooks. I see very few manipulatives, and hardly ever witness them in student hands. My principal (who is amazing and open to change) allowed me an hour to lead a professional development that all math teachers had to attend. Only and hour? So little time. I did a lesson with clay that I had previously done with my sixth grade class: Is dividing by 2 the same as dividing by 1/2? Prove it! I know that I reached at least two of the teachers. The kindergarten teacher asked if he could borrow my clay for his next lesson, and he and our principal were so enthused after his “most successful lesson ever!”. My question is, how do I reach those who rolled their eyes, and how do I reignite the spark for others? I’ve shared specific podcasts from both Jon and Kyle and from AMSI (MathsTalk), links to websites (including YouCubed), book titles, etc. As a K-8 charter school, we have the unique opportunity to join together and create one of the strongest math environments for students ever. Here are some of the challenges I’m working with:

    I have no official role to effect change in our overall math program (just middle school)

    We are a Spanish immersion school: math in elementary is taught in Spanish to students who are Spanish language learners

    After grade 2-5, all math classes are combined with two grade levels

    Teachers have less than one hour to devote to math for the two grade levels

    Teachers divide that time between the two grade levels. One grade level works on MobyMax while the other grade receives direct instruction or works in workbooks.

    I would love to brainstorm with you!

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by  Sonya Cook.
    • Pat Morris

      Member
      March 23, 2020 at 11:30 am

      Thanks for the reply Sonya. I had a great reply from another user, who has since deleted the message. I will leave the name out, but here were some suggestions. I’m looking forward to implementing some of these strategies when we all get back to the classrooms;

      1) Start with a teacher that is more open to implementing new ideas or a new teacher.
      2) Model the idea in the classroom with students so that others can see how it works. Then debrief about what went well and were opportunities for improvement.
      3) Then set a date that you would like to see the teacher try the strategy/idea.
      4) Then have that teacher comment about the experience to other teachers. Continue to support/monitor that teacher and then try the idea with the next willing participant.