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Adding Parents to the Equation


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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction Chapter 1: Why is Math Taught Differently than When I Learned it? Chapter 2: Mindset Chapter 3: Early Numeracy Chapter 4: Tell me in Layman's Terms: Speaking the Educational Jargon Chapter 5: Understanding Whole Number Addition & Subtraction Chapter 6: Understanding Whole Number Multiplication & Division Chapter 7: Fractions Chapter 8: Preparing Students for the Future: Beyond Elementary Mathematics Chapter 9: What You Can Do at Home Conclusion Glossary About the Authors

About the Author

Dr. Hilary Kreisberg is the Director of the Center for Mathematics Achievement at Lesley University in Cambridge, MA and an Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education. Hilary is the President of the Boston Area Mathematics Specialists organization, a Certified U.S. Math Recovery (R) Intervention Specialist, a Global Math Project Ambassador, a reviewer for the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) journals, and a national and international speaker. Her website is Twitter: @Dr_Kreisberg Dr. Matthew Beyranevand is the K-12 Mathematics Department Coordinator for the Chelmsford, Massachusetts Public Schools. Matthew is an ambassador for the Global Math Project, supporter for the With Math I Can campaign, and a member of the Massachusetts STEM Advisory Council. He also serves as an adjunct professor of mathematics and education at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell and Fitchburg State University. He is the author of the book "Teach Math Like This, Not Like That" and his website is Twitter: @Mathwithmatthew


This is an essential book! Our culture promotes a paradoxical relationship with mathematics, to both revere and fear it, to be in awe of its power and to be intimidated by its strength. And for us parents looking on, for whom stakes seem high, this lycanthrope of a beast has just changed forms! What is this "new math"? What is my child doing in school? Why does everything look so unfamiliar? Surely "math is math," so what has happened here? Should I help my child take command of what I am seeing or protect her from it? Kreisberg and Beyranevand address and answer these very questions head on, and do so with beautiful grace and the deepest respect. They eloquently bring sense to the how of mathematics as it is taught today, the why of it, and, most important, provide you full empowerment to understand and embrace the context and content of your child's mathematical journey. You are your child's most influential teacher. And this book is a gift for you. It is the gift that transforms befuddlement and dismay into clarity and joy. It is the gift that helps you help your child find confidence, facility, and delight throughout the curriculum. And most important, it is the gift that opens a door to one of mankind's most stunning of practical and intellectual achievements of all time: mathematics. -- James Tanton Ph.D., Mathematician-at-Large, Mathematical Association of America; Founder: The Global Math Project (
Let's face it: the way math is taught today is not the way most of us learned as students. That makes all of us feel uncomfortable and question whether it's a problem with us or a problem with how math is taught. If you're like me though, you realize that while you might have been able to DO math, you were more like a robot than someone who deeply understood what they were doing. That is why this book is so important for parents. Not only does it help you learn how to help your children, it tells you why this new approach is worthwhile and will help your children make sense of mathematics. Why do we carry the 1 or bring down the zero? Why do why we invert and multiply when dividing fractions? If you want to help your students to deeply understand and appreciate mathematics, this is the book you've been looking for. -- Robert Kaplinsky, Math Consultant,
At a time when parents are struggling to make sense of elementary mathematics, Kreisberg and Beyranevand provide an excellent resource to help settle nerves and right the ship. They assure us that math hasn't changed, nor is it broken by beautifully bridging the gap between "how math was taught when we were in school" and 21st century instruction. They do this by providing multiple strategies that equip parents with the knowledge and information needed to support their young mathematicians. If you want to know what's going on in your child's classroom and how to help, this book has your back. -- Graham Fletcher, Math Specialist,
What an absolutely needed breath of fresh and timely air! This is the first book that breaks through the clutter and misinformation in the media about how are children are being taught mathematics, and communicates that with clarity, empathy, and passion to the most neglected partner in education--parents. An essential book for any parent, or teacher for that matter, who wants to help understand and clearly communicate the complexity of teaching elementary mathematics in a deeply profound way. -- Sunil Singh, Math Specialist,; author,"Pi of Life: The Hidden Happiness of Mathematics" (2017)
At last! Dr. Hilary Kreisberg and Dr. Matthew Beyranevand provide an outstanding resource for parents, guardians and all interested adults caring for elementary children. This resources enables adults to understand the why's and how's of learning and teaching mathematics today. Using a conversational tone, the authors offer clear explanations of how and when students acquire mathematical knowledge, explain and justify the approaches used in classrooms today, and present strategies and resources for parents to make mathematics a fundamental and foundational tool for all involved. -- Kit Norris, Math Consultant
Adding Parents to the Equation: Understanding Your Child's Elementary School Math by Hilary Kreisberg and Matthew Beyranevand takes on the issue of helping parents/guardians understand the importance of teaching mathematics today so that students have a deep understanding of the why, how, and when (conceptual understanding, procedural skills and fluency, and application) of the mathematics. This book will help parents gain a better understanding of (1) some of the current math lingo, (2) the why behind strategies used in the classroom today, and (3) ways to support their students learning at home. Educators and administrators will find Adding Parents to the Equation: Understanding Your Child's Elementary School Math to be a useful tool in conversations with parents/guardians who seek to understand this "new math" and help their children at home. The "How to Help at Home" sections provide practical ways parents can help and is worth reading. In addition educators might find this section especially useful in math nights, parent conferences, and other situations where they find themselves trying to help parents help their children. -- John W. Staley Ph.D., past-president, National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics; Mathematics Educator, Baltimore County Public Schools

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