My students need real world problems to solve using math. A 1-year subscription for a classroom set of Scholastic's "Math" will provide great math problems every month!
The best math teaching and learning occurs when students are working on slightly messy, open ended problems that cause them to think critically. This was true before the new standards and it is certainly true now. I believe Scholastic's Math magazine will give my students this opportunity monthly!
Middle School is a school that teaches students in grades 6-8. We teach between 900-1000 students each year. Our demographics are predominately Hispanic and African American students. Approximately 90% of our students are on free and reduced lunches and economically challenged in other ways at home.
Based on test scores from 2011-2012, we are the lowest performing middle school in our county. We now have a new administration and I have absolutely no doubts that our last place finish during that year will not be the story of our future!
Many of my students see math as boring and/or scary and even though we tell them every way we can think of that math matters, many cannot see a real connection to their lives. I am on a mission to change their beliefs!
I was sent a trial copy of Scholastic's Math magazine last year and I really wanted to subscribe for a classroom set right away! Funding was not available and regrettably, I gave up. This summer I received another trial issue and I still feel strongly that this magazine is a gateway for kids who struggle with math to see real world meaning in what they are trying to learn.
I am also a math teacher who believes strongly in reading and writing taking place in the math classroom. I read a book called 'The Number Devil' a couple of pages at a time to them throughout the school year and you can really tell that many of the kids who identify more as readers than mathematicians value the experience.
Scholastic's Math will help me to continue to pull in the readers. Also, the articles are current...not dry old train leaving the station problems. I find this invaluable. Most importantly, I think my students will talk about these articles, and consequently talk about math!
If students can be convinced that math relates to their current lives and their future lives they will be more likely to buy into working through any mathematical difficulties and persevering to learn, discover, discuss, and create the mathematics that will be needed skills by every stakeholder in business, science, government, and the world at-large!
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