So if you’re here it’s probably because you’re as excited about helping your children with math as we are.
Try exploring these free videos to give you a greater sense of what’s possible. Click each video and explore the power of decomposing numbers or how bar modeling can develop into one of your most powerful tools for solving word problems.
We hope this is helpful and would appreciate your feedback and questions.
Sarah and the [Math]odology Team
Monthly Showcase Videos
Handouts from December Sessions
Workshop Wednesday with Dr. Jennifer Bay-Williams
- Fact Fluency Learning Progression
- Textbook Correlation
- Sentence Strands for Pretend 10
- Slides from Presentation
- Rubric for assessing Math Facts
Game Night with Sarah Schaefer
Building Math Fact Fluency
Dr. Jennifer Bay-Williams and Sarah Schaefer
Think back to your elementary years: Do you remember flashcards, timed tests, or the Around-the-World math game? Most of us learned our basic addition and multiplication facts through rote memorization. It is true that mastering math facts is important, however research shows that “drill and kill” memorization is not the best route for students. When we slap labels on mathematics such as speed and memorization we create a culture that is missing the beauty of numbers.
Our December Workshop Wednesday guest, Dr. Jennifer Bay-Williams, stated it very synchtly “fluency is not only about speed, rather it includes being flexible, accurate, efficient and appropriately solving problems.”
Many of us evaluate our math abilities based on how fast we could say or solve a math fact or a sheet of facts. This could not be further than the truth. Brain research found that those who merely memorized facts were less able to transfer fact strategies to new mathematical situations, nor could they think flexibly and therefore were categorized as “low-achieving 1 .
So the million dollar question becomes, “How can I help my students become fluent with math facts without creating anxiety?” Memorization is not an effective approach. A superior strategy is to allow more opportunities for students to reason and decompose numbers. We use what students naturally know, foundational facts, to derive facts that do not come as natural.