2021 Education magazine

Page 6 2021 Education Magazine LINCOLN DAILY NEWS February 18, 2021 I f you are a parent or teacher you have probably heard lament over a troublesome math problem, “What good is this ever going to do me? When am I ever going to need to know this?” The grievance summarily gets dismissed by the adult who says, “You will use math every day of your life.” And while it is true math is used daily, generations of youth have struggled with their studies. What if there was a different approach that made math practical, and even like they say of an antacid, relieves suffering? For the last two-plus years, with the Regional Office of Education (ROE) # 17, Math Instructional Coach Janet Moore, has been working with teachers at Chester-East Lincoln to build an ‘inquiry-based learning’ Math curriculum. ROE #17 serves DeWitt, Livingston, Logan and McLean Counties. Moore explains her role this way: “I provide professional development and classroom support for teachers. Sometimes, this means providing training on research-based practices that have proven to be effective for mathematics learning. The new math curriculum finds its seat in real world experiences. Moore explains, “We give students scenarios and tasks that allow them to explore and develop intuition about a Local educators creating practical math mathematical concept before we introduce the formal mathematics. “When students are able to make sense of a mathematical concept by grappling with it in a hands-on way, their knowledge about the concept is more meaningful and longer- lasting. “The class does not use pre-published standardized text books. Moore noted that many of the text books that are commercially available do not “truly align to the Illinois Learning Standards.” Working with CEL teachers Moore developed new lesson plans that give students the tools they need. She explained why this approach is better for teachers and students, “Rather than drawing from just one publisher, it is a compilation of high-quality teaching resources that come from a variety of sources. It is also a ‘living’ collection that is continually being added to and updated. “This curriculum is designed to support highly-responsive teaching. Rather than trying to write a script for teachers to follow, Continued p