How I Use It
It is evident that the MathNation curriculum is written by teachers for teachers. These professionals understand exactly what we, classroom teachers, need and are willing to go out of their way to make sure that we get just that. They create resources that are specifically aligned to our state standards. Have you seen their career interview at Boeing with a female engineer that is a product of our South Carolina Education System? For the students in my classroom, this video broke stereotypes by highlighting that people can be good at math, come from “around here” and be pretty!
When students are absent there is a substantial impact on academic performance. Since, March 15, 2020, we have ALL been absent from our classrooms. The amount of support that MathNation offered me made my transition to the online format virtually seamless. There was been no stress about how my math students were going to obtain both the instruction and personal connection within the 31-minute video meeting allotted by my administration. MathNation's SIX study experts taught the content while I meet with my kids daily in order to enjoy sharing fun real-world life, calming their fears, and helping with misconceptions.
Our district returned to full face-to-face instruction in August, I now teach the content live, however, quarantines due to close contact have again caused virtually every student to be absent at some point or another, for two weeks or longer. I cannot imagine having to record these lessons for my students each day as well as keep up with the demands that a Covid world has placed on us teachers. I have 25 students that did not return to school until the 2nd semester and the spiral nature of the MathNation Practice problems paired with the video instruction for each one has allowed me to continue teaching in-class material while students get the necessary background knowledge for future lessons.
The curriculum is seamless and shows the interconnectedness of all of the middle grades standards. For example, the progression from transformations, to similar triangles to slope was eye-opening, even to this 19-year veteran teacher! My students love the variety of activities including card sorts, hands-on manipulatives, and differentiated entry/exit points for both high and low learners. In complete honesty, the activities were not very Covid friendly at first, but all it took was an email to the MathNation Representatives, and those card sorts and manipulatives quickly became virtual Desmos, Geogebra, and Google Slide activities that could be down within the current Covid restrictions.
After using the MathNation curriculum for the toughest year I have ever encountered, I truly can not imagine my classroom without this amazing curriculum. It is literally a one-stop-shop, did I mention the parent videos that are designed specifically to help parents guide their student through the course or the Teacher Prep Videos that come with each lesson that highlight the major points of the activities? As you can tell I am a MathNation junkie and while I do not have my students' official MAP growth numbers yet, I know by the way that my inclusion students are able to discuss math, the way they are not afraid to jump into a rigorous problem, or the attitude they have when opening their books that this curriculum works!