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4 Ways to Help Parents with "New Math"

     It happens whether you use Common Core standards or not. It happens in every state, and it's all over social media: "New Math blah blah blah!" No matter how much you want to comment, you don't because you are a professional, but your poor spouse...they get to hear how dumb these comments are and how mad it makes you to see them. #sorrybabe
     How can we stop these comments? There is no good answer for that, but I do have a few ideas that may help prevent them so often.

1. Flip your classroom
     A flipped classroom is one where students do the lesson (teacher instruction) at home, then come to school ready to practice (homework) the new skill. I make my own {math videos} for my students, but you can always find good videos through Kahn acadamy or on YouTube. I use Google Classroom to push out the videos. There is a class that is for math videos specifically. Students are also able to access past videos. Videos can also be placed in Google Drive for student access. These can even be made avaliable offline. By flipping your classroom, parents are able to watch the math video at home with their student. They can learn together! 
2.  Math videos with homework
     QR Codes are magical things! They can easily be printed small and copied on any paper. I like to use {QRstuff} to make my QR codes. Even if you aren't 1:1 with technology, most parents have a phone that can have a free QR scanning app. If the student is having trouble on homework, scan the code and watch a video that teaches the lesson. If the parent and student are disagreeing on how "the teacher wants them to do it," scan the code and watch the video! Problem solved! I have created an entire {math curriculum} that uses this method of helping parents, help students with homework. 

3. Hold a Math Night at school
     "New Math" looks scary. Breaking numbers down by tens then by ones looks complicated to parents who are use to doing these types of things in their head, without even realizing it. Many adults also hear the word "math" and freeze up like they are in middle school again. Make it less scary for parents, who in turn can make it less scary for their kid! I love how Brett Berry, blogger at {Math Memoirs} explains this "new math." 

"We call this new math, but it isn’t new at all.
In fact, it has been around for a very long time. It’s called number sense. And it’s the way mathematicians have been thinking about numbers for centuries."
Most math series come with online access for students and teachers. During math night, teach parents how to use these resources. If you have online videos, teach parents how to access them. Prep them to help guide their student. Show them easy things they can do at home using food from the cabinet or even all those Shopkins! We can't do it all folks, put some of the work back on the babymakers, AKA parents! Become a team with your parents. It's better to have them working with you than against you. Also, cookies and juice don't hurt. 
*If you can't have a math night, utilize conference time! You explainition doesn't have to be more than five minutes. 
4. It's all about the stratigies
     We spend a week on adding, a whole week, if not more. We are teaching the students different stratigies they CAN use, not that they HAVE to use. "Making a Ten" may work for some, but that is WAY over my head. I have to reteach it to myself every year, to be honest. {Good thing I made a killer math video just for that! ;)} That just isn't how my brain works. For some students, they LOVE this method, they get it. I. just. don't. I am honest with my parents about some of the stratigies. I explain the can/have idea I have with the math stratigies we teach. Yes, for the specific lesson the student needs to pracitce this way. But in life, let's just take a reality check here, they are going to use whatever method stuck with them. 
      The more ways we can show a student how to do math the better. They will have so many options and there will be that ONE way that will stick. That is how they will do math. If parents want to use different stratigies at home, great! That is just one more way the student will know how to answer a problem. 
To find more information on why I use Math Videos {Click Here}.
To find my math videos {Click Here}.

Aimee <3


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