Q&A #2818

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Best math series

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From: dprice <dprice@ga.prestige.net>
To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion
Date: 2001032023:32:24
Subject: math pilot

I have been heavily involved with math education at the elementary
level for many years and have moved around in the last five years to
three different places.  I piloted math series in all of these places.
The series I am piloting this year is Everyday Math as someone
previously has discussed.  I do love this series.  It does not look
like a traditional text book (thank goodness) which is very hard for
some teachers to let go of. It is researched based and exposes
children to skills over and over again, but in different situations. I
highly recommend this program.  Another program I have piloted is TERC
mathematics.  This program too is wonderful, but you have to be ready
to handle mathematics differently than a typical text book.  Both TERC
and Everyday Math help to bring mathematics reform right into the
classroom.  Teachers generally need lots of training to be ready to
change their philosophy of how to teach mathematics to children of the
twenty-first century.  Most elementary teachers teach mathematics the
way they were taught.  Both of these programs teach mathematics
through a constructivists approach, particularly TERC.  Algorithms are
either developed(TERC) or taught with the mind set of true number
sense(Everyday Math).  Most teachers, including the very youngest of
teachers, have never seen algorithms presented the way these two
series do.  

Another series I have also piloted as a supplemental program was
Windows on Math by Optical Data. In particular their investigations
pieces are wonderful.  I have just purchased a few of these pieces to
supplement our program.  The investigations piece helps to integrate
math with the real world, but in a visual format.  These are great if
you are looking for real performance material.  

We did look at at least seven math series and most people agreed
Houghton-Mifflin, McGraw-Hill, Silver Burdett really were more of the
same from the past 15 years.  We wanted and needed something that
would keep our children engaged,inspired and competitive until our
next text book adoption seven years from now.

Hope this helps some. 

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