The 2016 Math Challenge

There is a good chance that today marks the beginning of a new year in your program.  I realize that many of you only had Friday off to celebrate New Year’s Day and it isn’t a whole lot of time to hunker down and make plans for big changes in your classroom, but it is an opportunity to make some small changes that can make big gains for the children you serve.

Consider all of the things you have read, heard, discussed, and thought about over the past 12 months that made you think to yourself, “I really should try that, do that, start that, finish that, or go for that.”  Now narrow that list down to those options for your classroom, program, or teaching practice that are focused on mathematics. From that list choose one thing that you know you can accomplish and then accomplish it. It is that easy.

Did you choose?

Making a set of Number Cards

Trying a new gross motor game that uses math 

Investing in new math-focused manipulatives

Check out some new children’s books that support early math learning

Revisit the new Illinois Early Learning and Development Standards

Planning for a new food activity

All of these can be completed in an hour or two.  Think about how great it feels to choose a task, begin the task, and then complete the task.  Once you get going, go back to your list and try out another idea.  Before you know it, you have made big changes one small task at a time.

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