How do your expectations influence the performance of your students? The answer may surprise you, and, like many influential scientific studies, it starts with some dumb rats and some smart rats. Bob Rosenthal, PhD, is an experimental psychologist has spent the last four decades researching how student performance might be influenced by our expectations. In […]

# Category: BlogPosts

Every three years the OECD administers and publishes the Programme for International Student Assessment, better known as PISA, which evaluates 15 year-old students around the world to determine how well their education system has prepared them for life after compulsory schooling. This test is important because it allows the performance of educational systems to be […]

Today the topic was introduction to exponents. We talked about using tables to organize our thinking and to look for patterns. Using the table, we can show students exponents, what they mean, and how to show that . The patterns in the table show that . Repeat with a base of 6. We see that […]

I am often asked for advice on the best practices for providing math intervention for our struggling students. What curriculum? How long? How often? Which students? While these are great questions – and indeed we must improve the math intervention we provide our students – the best way to address math intervention is to do EVERYTHING […]

My claim: people who teach math should also do #RecreationalMath as a regular part of their lifestyle. Just like English teachers read/write recreationally or music teachers play their instrument on their own time at home…math teachers should engage in doing math on their own. — duane habecker (@dhabecker) April 8, 2022 Many years ago I […]

For many educators, word problems surface longstanding fears of mathematics and memories of traumatic childhood experiences in math class. As a result, we often see posters on classroom walls attempting to distill strategies for solving word problems into a collection of key words. Perhaps you have seen the thousands of key word posters on the […]

When I meet someone new at a party and we exchange the customary small talk (“What about this weather?” or “How about those Giants?”), inevitably the question of what I do for a living comes up. Even before I share that I have been a middle school math teacher for 25 years, I can pretty […]

Counting Collections is a structured opportunity for students to count a collection of objects. In doing so, students develop strategies for organizing their collections, keeping track of their counting, and ultimately develop a concrete understanding of base ten place value system. Today I had the pleasure of observing a wonderful teacher as she led her kindergarten […]

Whenever I feel compelled to give unsolicited advice to teachers new to the profession, I give the following three suggestions: Stay curious. Always be willing to learn new things. Stay humble. Always be willing to unlearn things you thought were true, but aren’t. Begin each day with a reminder to yourself that you really, really […]

PROBLEM 1 The key strategy on this problem is to be super precise with your counting. For example, by treating 1×2 rectangles as DIFFERENT from 2×1 rectangles, you will see some pretty awesome patterns. Start by counting the 1-by’s and you will see there are 60 of them. You might also see a nice pattern. […]