By Marva Cooley. 3rd Grade Math. Published at Tuesday, November 03rd, 2020 - 00:23:34 AM.
Emphasize Skill Building In any academic subject, skills build upon each other as a child learns. If even one math concept has a child lost or confused, theyll have a hard time understanding the next thing that theyre meant to be learning. Its important to put emphasis on skill building at an early age so that, by the time they reach 3rd grade math, kids have the foundation necessary to begin learning and mastering more complex concepts. A knowledge of math facts is key at this level, especially when it comes to multiplication. In order to come to a full understanding of these facts, kids need to be proficient in addition and subtraction. Both of these processes involve a clear understanding of how numbers work together, a skill which can be tested and reinforced through the use of math games and interactive learning tools.
I close my eyes; Im back there banging fat felt eraser blocks together making chock dust clouds slide down the slanted rays of sunshine coming through the open window on this golden afternoon the first week of 3rd grade. I try not to breathe that fuzzy stuff in, but it doesnt really matter because I am elated with my elevated position. I feel special. Close my eyes again to travel back even further; I smell the suffocating odor of steaming hot wool as the nurses at Good Samaritan Hospital wrapped my paralyzed limbs in these cooked blankets rather than let me start 2nd grade with my friends. Hot packs they were called; the doctors said if I was a good girl and let them wrap me up as though I were a sausage several times a day I might someday wiggle my toes again. Well, did I have a choice? I was a good girl, but try as I might, not one of the ten moved. But that didnt really matter because I wasnt in an iron lung like some of the kids - I could breathe on my own. (Jonas Salks miracle was yet to come.)
Everyone knows by the time theyre in 3rd grade that its teachers pet who has the honor of cleaning the erasers, wiping down the blackboard, and replacing stubs with fresh, long white pieces of chock that felt amazingly smooth as your fingers slid lightly over their cool hardness as you placed them neatly in the chock tray. Mrs. Conroy smiled at me as she arranged the pages of each students best cursive writing on the bulletin boards flanking both sides of the clean blackboard. We had everything in place for tomorrow. It would be a great day. And I was, indeed, a good girl who had learned the hard way to wiggle her toes a few months ago with the encouragement of the physical therapy heroes.
What I consider to be his worst mistake, and this is again an inexperience issue because he hasnt yet seen this happen, is that he didnt consider the mathematical harm that he would cause his students. They wont experience the harm until next year when their 4th grade teacher expects certain knowledge that they wont have. I have no doubt that this young man can teach mathematics to 3rd graders. But I know from many years of experience with UCSMP, that the terminology used and the methods used vary greatly from what is found in a more traditional text. Unless he has been fired or put back on the district path, his 3rd grade students will have a difficult time in 4th grade math. His students deserved better from him.
Fencing - Physical Chess. The cliches surrounding the sport highlight the fact that successful fencers are very smart people. Is this the result of smart people fencing, or that fencing makes people smarter?Recent studies are showing that the latter is true, so head out to the fencing salle, learn some moves, and boost your brainpower! The science is in: physical activity boosts your brainpower. Intuitively, it seems natural that physical fitness would be linked to sharper intelligence, and according to a recent presentation at the 57th Annual Meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), exercise makes you smarter. This is good news for everyone, but particularly so for kids in school looking to make the grade.
Most school districts are rather lenient when it comes to new teacher mistakes. However, because of a lack of experience, there are several things that can and do get new teachers fired. This article is about one specific action by one specific teacher; although Im beginning to wonder if he is one of those Urban Legends. First, some background. A couple weeks ago I was doing some research for an article about UCSMP (University of Chicago School Mathematics Project) and trends in mathematics. I taught high school math in a school district that started using UCSMP (we referred to it as the Chicago Series) in 1988. My feelings about the Chicago Series will be in another article, but overall, I considered it to be an excellent math series with tremendous potential for improving student understanding of mathematics but with a couple major flaws that always seemed to lead to its demise. For my research, I just wanted to know if it still existed. I came across an article that I thought was written this year by a 23-year-old, male, 3rd grade math, 1st year teacher. My immediate reaction to his article was that he should be fired for several reasons.
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