## “Students Learn by Doing” is Only Part of the Story

Back when I was pursuing my teaching degree, I learned that students learn by doing. As we studied Bruner and... View Article

## “You Can’t Take a Bigger Number from a Smaller Number”

Blog post #6 in the series, Lies We Tell Our Students As a specialist in elementary mathematics teaching and learning,... View Article

## Does the “Longest” Number Have the Greatest Value?

Blog post #5 in the series, Lies We Tell Our Students Many of the mathematics “rules” we teach students in... View Article

## Does “Counting Up” Always Mean “Getting Bigger”?

Blog post #4 in the series, Lies We Tell Our Students Let’s be clear…this “lie” is not really about counting.... View Article

## Order Doesn’t Matter…or Does It?

Blog post #3 in the series, Lies We Tell Our Students The precision of our explanations matters! The words we... View Article

## From Run-on Sentences to Run-on Equations…Neither is Okay!

Blog post #2 in the series, Lies We Tell Our Students We all know what a run-on sentence is. We’ve... View Article

## The Equal Sign Means Relationship, Not Action

Blog post #1 in the series, Lies We Tell Our Students The Story A while back, I was working in... View Article

## Are Your Mathematics Games C, P, or A?

Serious Play #4 Imagine this…you walk into a noisy, bustling classroom where students are spread out in small groups at... View Article

## Not all Math Games are Created Equal

Serious Play-Part 4 Why is it that some games get played over and over while others remain on the shelf... View Article

## The Social-Emotional Benefits of Math Games

Serious Play, Part 3 Playing math games in the classroom offers so many benefits! Depending on the game at hand,... View Article

## Discourse During Math Games

Explicitly teaching children listening and speaking skills in the context of ones’ own discipline promotes the interactions that facilitate learning. In math class, math games present the perfect scenario for teaching children to talk math.

## Games That Stand the Test of Time

Serious Play-Part 1 Even before I had my own classroom, game play as a learning tool fascinated me. From the... View Article

## In Pursuit of Fluency-Part 6: Operations Beyond Basic Facts

Because we have been talking a lot about fluency in the past few blog posts, it suddenly occurred to me... View Article

## In Pursuit of Fluency-Part 5: Math Fact Fluency

In my experience, when discussing mathematical fluency, math-fact fluency is by far the most frequently referenced topic. After all, success... View Article

## In Pursuit of Fluency-Part 4: Number Sense in the Middle Grades

Welcome to Part 4 of our Fluency Series! In Part 3, we discussed fluency with early number concepts such as... View Article

## In Pursuit of Fluency-Part 3: Fluency with Early Number Sense

When Josie, a young athlete, had the goal of making her middle-school basketball team, she spent time preparing for tryouts.... View Article

## In the Pursuit of Fluency-Part 2: Number Sense

When you think about the term “math fluency,” what comes to mind? My guess is that the first thing, and... View Article

## In the Pursuit of Fluency-Part 1

What is fluency? As a literacy specialist in my early career, I equated the word “fluency” with the ability to... View Article

## The Best Math Tools For Your Classroom

I hear these questions all the time — “What math tools should be available in my classroom?” “Which manipulatives purchase... View Article

## Mathematical Motivation through the Holidays – For Teachers

Keeping math fresh and alive for your students during the holidays goes a long way in keeping both rigor and... View Article

## Mathematical Motivation Through the Holidays

As the holidays approach, and with them an extended break between semesters, motivation wanes, not only among students but also... View Article

## Keeping Math Routines Fun and Fresh!

Do you experience points during the school year that send you into a mini-panic about where your kids currently are... View Article

## Grading Practices That Impact Learning

Last week, I shared ways to shift homework practices to maximize student learning and understanding. This week, I turn my... View Article

## Math Homework – Helpful or Harmful?

I remember math class as a child. As soon as we walked in the door, we would get our homework... View Article

## Are Base Ten Blocks Road Blocks? (Part 2)

Becoming a teacher-turned-inventor never crossed my mind earlier in my career. However, since joining forces with Peggy, this is the... View Article

## Are Base Ten Blocks Road Blocks? (Part 1)

Spoiler Alert: If you haven’t already read John Van de Walle’s Teaching Student-Centered Mathematics, you’re going to want to get... View Article

## Authentic Problem Solving is Fluid and Flexible

Years ago, I walked into a Weight Watchers meeting, shy, self-conscious, and unsure of what to expect. After signing my... View Article

## So You Took Keywords Away – Now What?

Problem Solving Song sung to Row, Row, Row Your Boat “Problems come along in many different ways… Follow these steps... View Article

## Don’t Fall Into the Keyword Trap

I’ve done it. You’ve done it. We’ve likely all done it at some point…used a “trick” to help us find... View Article

## Just Say the Word! (Part 2)

In last week’s post, I shared the dangers of using imprecise language in the classroom – inadvertent mistakes we teachers make... View Article

## Just Say the Word! (Part 1)

Creating School-Wide Agreements for Common Math Vocabulary I recently witnessed a captivating first-grade lesson. As students interacted in small groups,... View Article

## Math They Can “See” – Common Visuals Within and Across Grade Levels

A while back, I was talking with a fourth-grade teacher at my school. She questioned, “What did the third-grade teachers... View Article

## Math “Rules” That Expire: Questioning Conventional Wisdom

“Multiplication makes bigger and division makes smaller.” “You can’t subtract a larger number from a smaller number.” “Improper fractions should... View Article

## Building and Empowering Math Teams

“Many hands make light work,” claimed John Heywood more than 600 years ago. And we still find this to be... View Article

## Why We Do What We Do

If you believe that lives can be changed through the transformative power of education, then JOIN US! Whether you lead... View Article

## First Days and Beyond

Ah! The first day of school — excited greetings between long-time friends, fearful glances from new students, wistful looks from... View Article

## Summer Break: A Time for Reflection

Summertime… a time to relax, a time to learn, a time to catch up, a time to dream and to... View Article

## Getting It “Right”: What Should My Daily Math Schedule Include?

I get asked this question a lot. Everywhere I go, teachers are looking for how to make the best use... View Article

## Let’s Play and Learn (Game Play in Math Class, Part 2)

As a novice teacher many years ago, I found that playing games in math class brought about high levels of... View Article

## Game Play in Math…and a Summer Surprise

As the summer months approach, you will likely, after taking a little time off, begin thinking and planning for next... View Article

## Rounding Rules: Teaching Traps That Perpetuate Rote Memorization

We’ve all done it…teaching rules without meaning. For me it was rounding rules. I had found the perfect song. The... View Article

## Show Me the Money!

When was the last time you tried to teach a young child to count coins? If you’re like me, you... View Article

## Writing Rough Drafts in Math Class?

When do “rough draft” and “math task” ever land in the same sentence? Honestly, when I first heard these two... View Article

## One Moment in Time…Forever Changed

As a young child, I hated PE class. I had embarrassingly poor eye-hand coordination, so when a football, softball, kickball,... View Article

## Make Every Minute Count!

Every one of us has a finite number of minutes to live, to breathe, to laugh, to learn. And in... View Article

## It’s All About the Why, the When, and the How

Let’s face it – you and I hear far too many adults freely admit, “I’m just not very good at... View Article

## Can Math Class Nurture Creativity?

Everyone is born creative. And then somewhere down the line, many lose sight of it. In his classic Ted Talk,... View Article

## “Imagination is More Important Than Knowledge”

Albert Einstein said it best, “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” As educators, it’s our job to bring this idea... View Article

## The Journey IS the Destination

“The journey IS the destination!”  That’s one of my favorite quotes. This journey we begin today is going to be an... View Article