Math


Math Class in Mrs. Desfosses's Room


As you may know we are using a new program for math as of last year: Math in Focus. 

 Math in Focus

Why does it seem like my learner is coming home with repeat skills at the beginning of each unit?
The Math in Focus program works on building on skills from the previous year to then extend and expand learners understanding. These building blocks help the learners to expand their thinking and make new connections. 

Why are they learning skills in a new way?
Math in Focus focuses on Math as thinking. We want learners to understand the WHY and not just the HOW when it comes to doing math. Old-school math programs focused on skills, drills and formulas. We now know that it is more important for learners to become critical thinkers and truly understand why they are performing certain operations. This helps learners to make connections and develop their problem solving and critical thinking skills.

What will my learner bring home for homework?
Generally math homework will be assigned Mondays-Thursdays. Most of the time homework will be out of the workbook. If a test/quiz is coming up review pages may be assigned instead. 
Workbook/Homework pages are designed to be independent work and help your learners practice skills and their math teacher to understand where they are in the process of understanding the material. Learners will be given the opportunity to start their homework at the end of math class each day. This allows their math teacher to observe their independent work, and allows the learners to ask any questions they may have about the homework. Anything that is not finished in class will be sent home.
While learners are starting their homework, I will also go around and check each learner's homework from the night before. This is their chance to ask questions about anything that might be confusing them. 

What should I do to help my learner?
If learners have questions while completing homework, it is best to have them bring those questions back to class. Please have them circle the number of any problem they have trouble with. This will be a visual cue to remind the learner to ask questions during the one-on-one homework review. It will also allow me to see where they are having trouble if they do not want to speak up.
You could also have them talk through and 'teach you' what they are doing. We have a lot of discussion in math class and verbalizing what they are doing could help learners to break through a sticky moment. (Please circle the numbers of any problems that they need to talk through)

** Homework is NOT meant to drive the learners crazy***
If you notice that your learner is getting frustrated over the homework because they don't understand, OR it seems like their math homework is taking an unnaturally long time STOP. As a general rule of thumb your learner's math homework should not take much longer than 15-20 minutes to complete. (Remember they have already had at least 10 minutes to start it in class) I do not want them struggling over homework for 45 minutes or longer. IF this is the case please write me a note in their workbook letting me know. I can address whatever the frustration is over in class the next day.