Sunday, May 24, 2015

Celebrate with Us

       Let's celebrate a beautiful victory! Over the last few weeks I have been coaching a family in scaffolding their eighth grader for Mathematics success.

        Initially it seem the student would not pass the course or the EOC, required end of course test.  I consulted with his family on the things to say to help him, ways to help his brain remember and focused skills to study.

       Together we found resources that were uniquely tailored for him.  He worked daily on learning Math with his mother.  We used his failures to scaffold his success.  Since he was allowed to retake the test it was handy to be able to concentrate on problems that he missed to see what he needed to know next.

    Celebrating small successes put him on the path to greater success. It also gave him a step up because we could take a moment to see what he had right.  On every test there were always some problems I could use to show he was learning the Math.  I would say you have these problems right.  Since you learned this Math, you can learn the others. He did his part.  He believed me and he worked hard.

      At the beginning of this nine weeks ,the first test we reviewed as a group was a 50, the lowest score he could receive.  On retesting he was able to bring it up to a 75 and we celebrated.

      When the next test rolled around, he made a 70 out of the gate.  After working together he was able to bring it up to  82.

      When he took the EOC it had to be sent off for grading.  He felt ill about the wait and did not know how he performed.  He did not feel good about it. This test could make the difference between passing Algebra or failing.

I received a call this Friday evening.  His score on the EOC was a 92! He passes for the year. Amazing!

       I now remember why I love teaching and how grateful I am to have discovered the joy of coaching families.

Some of my favorite fun Math resources:

 The Secrets of Mental Math is in my personal library.  Teaching your children these tricks can cure boredom on long car rides and can begin the scaffolding process for Math success.

Crossing the River with Dogs is also in my personal library. It teaches the problem solving skills George Polya wrote about in How to Solve it.

Not for kids but really powerful if you want to create strong roots for the Math success  of you family. How to Solve it by George Polya:

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