2016 was a pretty good year unless you take into account the number of celebrity deaths that occurred. However, from a mathematical education perspective, 2016 had many positive gains and 2017 strives to be an even better year. There are many important events, activities, and developments that need to be shared with the community. Here are the six that you should consider making a New Year’s Resolution around:
1. The Global Math Project. The aim of this group of math enthusiasts is to thrill over one million students, teachers, and adults with joyous math through Exploding Dots on 10 10 17. Research mathematician James Tanton leads the project and the group is looking for ambassadors to spread the word and develop the program. I proudly serve as one of the ambassadors and believe that this will be a game changer next year. Netmath is a huge supporter of the development.
2. Development of Growth Mindset. The ideas of Growth Mindset in mathematics classes have finally become recognized primarily because of the work of Jo Boaler and Youcubed. The With Math I Can campaign started last year and has grown to almost 500,000 people committed to stop saying “I’m not good at math” and approach math with a growth mindset and not a fixed mindset. I proudly serve as a volunteer for the initiative to help every student succeed in math. Here is my music video on the importance of growth mindset in math. The work of Anthony Persico and his Mash Up Math videos help teach for understanding.
3. Podcasts. There are three excellent math education podcasts available each with a different theme. Math Ed Podcast is run by Sam Otten and has interviews with math education researchers about recent studies. Zone of Potential Construction is a new podcast by Chris Brownell and focuses on learning and teaching of mathematics and science. Finally, my podcast of Math with Matthew records discussions on important topics in math education that includes teachers, administrators, coaches, and professors.
4. Books. The book of 2016 was Jo Boaler’s Mathematical Mindsets as it was best-selling and became important to the development of growth mindset. There are two books set for 2017 release that hope to accomplish a similar feat. Sunil Singh is releasing “Pi of Life: The Hidden Happiness of Mathematics” and will be the most elegant and enlightening book of mathematics written. My pedagogical book “Teach Math Like This, Not Like That” will be released around the same time as Sunil’s book which should be Fall of 2017.
5. Games. There two new and popular games that have been created by math enthusiasts. Albert’s Insomnia is both a board and electronic game that makes learning and practicing math fun. Prime Climb is a fantastic game of learning to multiply and divide in an engaging manner.
6. Math Websites. There are three growing webpages that should be visited by all math lovers. Nick Johnson runs the Math: An Integral Part of Happiness Facebook page with over 128k followers. Rakhi Chawla is redefining the way math is taught through her work on Ed3D. Finally, my website Math with Matthew provides math music videos, pilot TV show, podcast, blog, and more.
2017 is set to be a great year for math education. As you prepare for the start of the year and work on your resolutions, I hope that you will consider many of these ideas and resources shared.