Magazine article District Administration

Everyday Mathematics Builds a Strong Foundation for Algebraic Thinking: Students Master Key Concepts as Teachers Easily Track Their Progress

Magazine article District Administration

Everyday Mathematics Builds a Strong Foundation for Algebraic Thinking: Students Master Key Concepts as Teachers Easily Track Their Progress

Article excerpt

When Nita Cochran was district math coordinator for Norman Public Schools in Oklahoma, she was looking to help the district's elementary school students improve their mathematical foundation. There are nearly 16,000 students in NPS, which is located in Oklahoma's third-largest city and is also home to the University of Oklahoma.

Cochran, who is currently math curriculum coordinator for Mustang Public Schools in Oklahoma, launched a pilot program in 2003 with Everyday Mathematics from McGraw-Hill at two of the district's elementary schools.

"Our goal was to have our ninth-grade students take Algebra I," Cochran says.

Cochran says Everyday Mathematics provides the best path for elementary school students to solidify their mathematical foundation.

Everyday Mathematics, which was developed by The University of Chicago's School Mathematics Project, continually reinforces math concepts through concrete real-world applications. It helps students master key concepts by revisiting content in a variety of contexts over time, as opposed to rote memorization. Everyday Mathematics builds teachers' confidence that students will master state standards for each grade. Teachers can see how content develops across lessons and pinpoint each student's mastery level for standards at any point during the school year.

After a successful pilot, teachers from the two pilot schools championed Everyday Mathematics to fellow faculty members and convinced them to adopt it districtwide in 2004. …

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