Math Adventures

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Updates and News

  • Ideas for Integrating Math into Everyday

    Posted May 15

    Have you ever read How Much Is A Million? by David Schwartz? Schwartz takes his readers on an exploration of the magnitude of one million and at one point estimates that it would take 23 days of nonstop counting to count to a million. One teacher reported that after hearing this story, his students wanted to figure out if it was really true? Would it really take 23 days to count to a million? So they devised an experiment to investigate this claim and had to think about all sorts of things in the process of coming to grasp indeed how long it would take to count to a million.

    This is an example of how your children can explore math in the summer (actually all year) and, note, this exploration started within the context of reading a wonderful piece of math literature!

    Check Here >>
  • Recommended Reading For Parents

    Posted May 7

    Jo Boaler, professor of Mathematics Education at Stanford University has published two important pieces in the Hechinger Report that I encourage you to read.

    One article is titled, “Memorizers Are The Lowest Achievers and Other Common Core Math Surprises"

    And the other is, “Should we stop making kids memorize times tables?”

    Jo Boaler is the co-founder of and author of What’s Math Got To Do With It: How Teachers and Parents can Transform Mathematics Learning and Inspire Success. (Penguin, 2015)She also offers a wonderful online course for parents on How Students Learn Math through Stanford University's continuing education program.

  • Math Over the Summer?

    Posted May 7

    Summer at its best is all about a change in pace: A reprieve from the over-scheduled weeks of the school year. There is time for kids to go to a pool or the beach, explore the woods, have fun at camp, enjoy stretches of play time with friends, and simply hang out! Wow, to think that they might even have the chance to say “I’m bored!” sounds like music to my ears. It is a wonderful time for kids to read and to continue growing as readers. Likewise, it is an opportune time for children to keep exploring numbers and thinking about math in the world around them.

    While reinforcing math skills during the summer, parents must be careful not to do more harm than good by overemphasizing rote drill work. It simply isn’t true that to be good at math means to be fast at computation. Some of the world’s greatest thinkers, scientists and mathematicians have not been fast at arithmetic; however, they became famous for their higher-level thinking skills. Certainly it is important that children learn to add, subtract, multiply and divide efficiently and quickly and that they learn their basic facts without having to figure them out or count them on their fingers, but computational facility is only part of a comprehensive math foundation. Children need time to develop an understanding of mathematical concepts and opportunities to think and reason, to solve problems in a variety of contexts. Instead of sending kids off to do hours of drill work on their own, children can practice their math facts in a variety of interesting contexts and families can play fun games that develop mathematical thinking.

    Here are some general goals to keep in mind for your children over the summer:

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  • A Great Read

    Posted September 19

    This is an excellent article by Jo Boaler that I highly recommend all parents read.

    It is titled, "Twelve Steps To Increase Your Child’s Math Achievement and Make Math Fun." Here is the link:

  • Math Phobic? Hopefully not!

    Posted September 5

    For even the slightest hint of math phobia, I highly recommend this article published in the Wall Street Journal on August 29th. - A Worksheet for Math-Phobic Parents

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  • The Math Corner - Addition Strategies

    Posted October 18
    One of our goals in the Lower School math program is to expose students to a variety of ways to perform operations and to a variety of strategies for solving problems. Learn more about how we teach these strategies.
    Check Here >>
  • The Math Corner: How Properties are Basic to Arithmetic

    Posted November 1

    We all use the commutative, associative and distributive properties when working with whole numbers and so do our children. You might think a column discussing these properties is “too mathematical” for parents of young students but in fact understanding the relationship between these properties and basic numeric operations is the foundation of arithmetic.

    Check Here >>
  • The Math Corner: More on Subtraction

    Posted November 15

    Many parents are surprised to see their children using alternative subtraction strategies when it comes to multi-digit problems, but these strategies are just as efficient as the standard algorithm they are wedded to. These strategies make mental computation easier and they work well on paper.

    Check Here >>
  • The Math Corner: Encouraging the Development of Several Strategies

    Posted November 8
    Students invent wonderful computational methods when the teachers embed tasks in simple contexts. From the very start, teachers are presenting story problems which in turn naturally foster the development of a variety of strategies.
    Check Here >>
  • THE MATH CORNER – Great Math Books to Read with Your Kids

    Posted December 17

    Here are some suggestions for great books that discuss a math concept. These books are great read together books so you can talk about the concepts while you read! We'll run lists with additional books from time to time.

    Check Here >>



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All first through fourth graders have SFS Dreambox accounts. The teachers have the usernames and passwords. 

Information about Dreambox