Making Math Accessible For All Students
Every Student Deserves the Opportunity to Find Joy in Mathematics
Every student deserves a chance to succeed in mathematics. Each learner should have the opportunity to enjoy mathematics instruction, to feel empowered by math knowledge, and to consider themselves part a group that, to many students, can feel very distant — those who are “good at math.” As math positivity becomes a top priority for many educators, there a variety of spaces math teachers can concentrate to ensure that math is accessible for all students. Here are a few of our favorites, with supporting resources to help you kickstart your efforts:
Focus on Positivity
Combat math phobias, negative feelings about mathematics, and the understanding that math is “only for certain people” by honing in on math positivity. In the resources below, you’ll find a variety of strategies for promoting math positivity, from research by math experts, to classroom anecdotes from a 5th grade teacher, and a global, free math positivity program you can sign up for today.
By Raj Shah, Ph.D. and James Tanton, Ph.D.medium.com
Engage Families and Community
If you’re dealing with math negativity issues in your school or classroom, connecting with parents and family can be a great place to start fostering student confidence in math. When parents understand the importance of modeling math positivity, engaging in dialogue about homework, and being supportive of both student’s curiosity and struggles in math, your efforts in the classroom carry an even greater impact. In the resources below, find research and strategies for communicating with parents about math education and assessment.
4 Ways to Reduce Test-Induced Student Stressmedium.com
With a Guide from Dr. Raj Shah, Founding Member of the Global Math Projectmedium.com
Focus on Equity and Inclusivity
Not every student’s relationship with math, or obstacles to enjoying and succeeding in math, will be the same. Understanding how dis/ability, socio-economic factors, language, and other influences on a student’s experience can impact their particular math relationship to math will also help you better understand their math instructional needs. In the resources below, find strategies for fostering an equitable math class, and specifics to empower English Learners.
Guidance on Differentiating in Math Instructionmedium.com
Tips for Engaging ELs in Math, Science, and Moremedium.com
Prioritize Group Work and Communication
Game-based learning, grouping, and classroom discourse are important elements to both improve math abilities and to promote math positivity. Students can learn from each other, build each other up, and engage in fun math activities.The resources below detail specific strategies for purposeful group work, collaboration, and communication among students in math class:
Communication & Reasoning in Mathematicsmedium.com
By Math Educator and Guest Blogger Christine Younghusbandmedium.com
For additional math resources, see: