Investigations involves talking…..
This school year, all Central School classes began using a new math program called Investigations. Mr. Nemlich explained, “Investigations is a program that has been around for many years. It has been used at different grade levels in this building, but this year we have extended it so that it is being used throughout all the grades, K-4.”
…and explaining your thinking…
He added, “Investigations is based on different practices around math, not the traditional ‘this is how we add, this is how we subtract’ kind of teaching. It is more exploratory with lots of opportunities to play around with math ideas and help you discover things on your own.”
…and using manipulatives…
….and building arrays….
When asked if he liked the Investigations program, Mr.Nemlich said, “I do like it because it helps kids become more math thinkers than math doers. It is really important that kids are thinking about numbers and how numbers are used and how they can use numbers as opposed to simply getting good at multiplying numbers or adding numbers.”
Mr.Nemlich added, “I don’t think it is complicated. I think it is actually a more exciting math program. Lots of activities, lots of working with classmates, listening to classmates, working together. A lot less ‘kids sitting in chairs listening to the teacher talk’ type of instruction. It is a much more engaging and fun program, and learning should be fun.”
Mr.Nemlich said he would “absolutely” have liked to have had the Investigations math program used when he was a kid! He added, “I was the kind of kid that did okay in math, but I didn’t really understand what I was doing. I didn’t fully understand subtraction until I had to teach it to somebody and then I could explain it. As I was doing it as a kid, I was just sort of following processes and procedures. I think Investigations is much more exciting.”
Alex, a fourth grader, agreed. He said, ”I think Investigations takes you deeper into math and makes you understand math better.”
…and explaining your answer….
Mrs.Sellarole likes the new math program a lot. She said, “Investigations helps students to think deeply about math and really understand place value too. This program helps students think about and explain their thinking as they make sense of math. There are fewer topics but students look into them more deeply, using models, cubes, and number lines to show their math thinking. They also use math thinking to link math to real life examples.”
…which you can get in many different ways!
Mark your calendars! On January 28th, there will be a Family Math Night for families with students in kindergarten, first, and second grades. Then on February 11th, there will be a Family Math Night for families with students in third and fourth grades. Families will learn and play math games, and the class with the most families attending will win a trophy!!