L I T E R A C Y
MATH & FINANCIAL
Money has value!
Learning mathematics is an innate skill that all humans possess from infancy. This may come as a surprise to many of us who have defined ourselves as math people or non-math people, but this either/or concept is false. The majority of students can learn mathematics to high levels with a teaching methodology that encompasses the following strategies:
Multi-Dimensional Teaching vs One Dimensional Teaching
Traditionally, we have taught math fundamentals in one way: memorization. We ask students closed questions and test them on memorized equations and facts. Sound familiar?
We now understand, however, that students grasp a deeper understanding of mathematical concepts when they are represented in diverse and complementary ways. When we see a problem in pictures, models, or algorithms and learn to solve these problems in different contexts, the brain makes connections easier and creates a higher level of learning not possible when using numbers in symbolic form alone.
Additionally, this way of teaching is joyful for both our students and our teachers – building relationships that are instrumental to our students’ development.
Teaching on the Edge of Understanding
When students are challenged, if they make mistakes and correct them themselves, that ultimate discovery of the answer makes the brain grow. Information is retained and confidence is built. When we demand less from them cognitively, however, we disempower our students from reaching their highest potential.
Many times we jump in to save students who are struggling, but by doing that we devalue the struggle and soon students seek to avoid challenges at all costs. Their confidence comes from getting answers right and we want to see our students fight to obtain new knowledge and skills. There is no better feeling than working hard and finding solutions.
This mindset is important not only in math but in developing lifelong learners and problem-solvers.