Earlier this summer I wrote about an inspiring session at ISTE co-presented by Jo Boaler and Alice Keeler. Boaler is dedicated to spreading the word that anyone can be a math person as long as you have a growth mindset and appropriate learning opportunities. As a Professor of Mathematics Education at Stanford, Jo Boaler co-founded youcubed.org, and has presented a new “Week of Inspirational Math” curriculum on the site annually for free for the last two years. Week 3 has just been published on the site, and is ready for educators from K-12 to use. Having used the Week 1 and Week 2 curriculums in the past, I would highly recommend that you begin your school year with one or all three of these sets of math lessons. The activities are broken down into grade-level strands, so there is no need to fear that your Kindergarten children will be asked to solve high school equations. 🙂
This year’s lesson include videos, PDF’s, and even access to a program called “Polyup,” which you can learn more about here.
I have personally witnessed students who believe they are “bad at math” be successful with these activities and become excited about doing more. Those who have had negative experiences learning math can turn these around with thoughtful conversation and the passion of a teacher who believes in them. Put Week 3 of “Week of Inspirational Math” into your beginning of the year lesson plans, and watch as your students learn to love math!