What do you think of Everyday Math?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by TamiJ, Mar 9, 2011.

  1. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    My coordinator asked me about this today, as she is thinking about possibly switching to it. I told her I had heard of it from here, but don't know much about it. Can those of you tell me about it? We currently use Scott Foresman, and personally, I really, really like it. Do you find Everyday Math to be successful? What is it like?

    Thanks you guys!
     
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  3. shoreline02

    shoreline02 Cohort

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    Everyday math takes a different approach to doing things. When I was student teaching in fourth grade, I had to re-learn how to multiply and divide. It was very different. My cooperating teacher said its wonderful but one downfall was that it was hard for parents to help their kids with homework since they were unfamiliar with everyday math. She also said that since everyday math was used with only elementary school, she and other teachers needed to go and show the middle and high school teachers how to use it.
     
  4. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    I haven't used all of it, just the calendar math portion. Which I absolutely love.
     
  5. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Then you are using something else in addition to it? Is it complete by itself? I saw the book for 1st grade and it seems rather small...
     
  6. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    The program is a complete math program. It was written with gifted or advanced students in mind. However, it has some new ideas that work great for struggling learners.

    I can honestly say that I loved teaching it when I taught younger grades. It was fun to teach and with many games. However, it does not work on mastery at one time, instead it spirals the curriculum so students are always reviewing and adding on. Take a look at the scope and sequence and you will better understand what I am saying.

    This approach works great for some of my sixth graders and I really see the math click when we start focusing on one concept until mastery. However, for some kids, they never learn the basics and really do slip through the cracks with this kind of program. I cannot name the number of students who cannot add, subtract, multiply or even divide by sixth grade.

    Many parents are confused by the way everyday math teaches skills and do get frustrated with the program. In addition, many parents tell me how relieved they are when their child hits sixth grade and how much easier math is now.
     
  7. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    Most teachers I knew back at home didn't like it. It takes a very different approach to things, and as it was mentioned parents have no idea how to help kids at home with homework. That's interesting that you say it was fun Mopar, because the biggest complaint I ever heard about it from teachers and students was that it was boring! In my home city, there always seemed to be this argument between the "everyday math" camp and the "problem based learning" camp. When I was teaching regular ed. I was certainly in the "problem based learning" camp, haha. What is interesting about where I work now is that they do both- which was practically unheard of where I came from. Either people thought everyday math was the way to go or pbl was the way to go. We've had a lot of pd/meetings on how to integrate inquiry based learning techniques into every day math.
     
  8. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Many of our everyday math lessons were inquiry based learning and having the students determine the reasoning behind the procedure and even create the procedure. That was the thinking that I thought was great and unique to this program. I also loved that the students were creating and making basically every lesson.
     
  9. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Oh boy, this is making it hard to decide. When you say the Everyday Math takes a different approach, can you explain that? Like how?
     
  10. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    http://www.oswego.org/files/filesystem/PR_K-3.pdf

    You might want to take a look at this. Basically, this program introduces concepts for about 2 years before expecting students to master the concept. Then, the chapters kind of jump around so students may be working on multiple skills in one chapter instead of a unit of skills all involving fractions. This is their spiral curriculum, so students continue to practice fractions even when they are working on geometry skills.

    Also, the algorithms introduced are different. The program introduces three or four algorithms for different skills (check out the link above). Students are supposed to master one of them, but sometimes they don't master any because it is too much information.

    If you do go this route, please make sure to get training from the publisher!
     
  11. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Thanks Mopar! That information is very helpful.
     
  12. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    My school district uses it and we aren't making AYP in math if that tells you anything. I don't like it is spirals and the kids don't seem to master a skill before moving on. I like Scott Foresman better.
     
  13. LUCHopefulTeach

    LUCHopefulTeach Habitué

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    The school I student taught in used Saxon Math and the school I volunteer in now uses Everyday Math. I don't like either programs. Both are spiral programs with little practice provided.
     
  14. jteachette

    jteachette Comrade

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    If you have students who move in and out of the school, or have English Language Learners, I would not recommend EveryDay Math.
    If you have a stable population, where the parents are pretty with it, then it would be a good program.
    The school I teach at used EveryDay Math, and switched to Saxon, because our population is mostly ELL, and the parents could't handle the homework. The children are much more successful with Saxon.
     
  15. SCTeachInTX

    SCTeachInTX Fanatic

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    Mar 10, 2011

    LOVE IT!:rolleyes:
     
  16. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I tutor it, don't like it.
     
  17. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    It seems the responses here are more negative than positive. And, our student population is all EL, with the exception of just a handful, so this curriculum worries me. I really like the Scott foresman.
     
  18. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    I have not taught it but my youngest son went through most of elementary school with it. It was a terrible program for him and he really never recovered in math. I feel like I taught him everything he knows about math - which isn't much. We are so glad the nightmare of math is behind him - he's a HS sr. headed to a liberal arts college.
     
  19. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Thanks all. I sent an email to my coordinator and suggested that we stick to Scott Foresman. Thanks for the great info all!
     
  20. kab164

    kab164 Companion

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    I student taught in 1st grade, wasn't too fond of it. It's strong in higher level thinking skills and problem solving, weak for basic skills. Unless teacher supplement, students don't learn times tables, etc. It is a corkscrew curriculum so you do a little bit of something like fractions, then go on to geometry, then time/money, etc. etc. so you don't really master the concepts. Of course they would say that you will be exposed to it again the following year.

    My sister had to pay tutors in the summer for her kids as they were average/below average and this is the group it doesn't work well for. It has some nice features but if I had to choose a program, it wouldn't be this one. Of course I work with Title 1 students so I might be biased. I think it can work IF teachers supplement with basic fact drills. When I was in a 3rd grade classroom when I was in college, I couldn't believe the kids didn't know there were four quarters in a dollar, that drove me crazy!
     
  21. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    Um, I hate it and we've essentially abandoned it completely in my room. We teach from the weaknesses our kids show on the NWEA. I appreciate the higher level thinking, but my kids need to know addition and subtraction facts. There's never time for that. Now we spend differentiated groups focused on one skill like place value, money, etc. I really think you need these things for life.
     
  22. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    I'm on a listserv for EDM since my district uses it. This is a note from one of the threads:

    "There is a new (2012) ed coming out that will provide explicit alignment information to the Common Core Standards. "

    Thought you might like to know, and wait if you do choose EDM.

    It does NOT work for multiage classes, like mine.
     
  23. HeatherY

    HeatherY Habitué

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    I didn't love it. I didn't like the spiral concept and a lot of my kids didn't attain mastery before moving on and you HAD to push through it (In theory they would continue the concepts because of the spiraling so you can move on as needed). I agree with the comment on stable populations vs ELL students. Another school nearby has great success with it, but their population was totally different.

    I think that one difficulty is that our standards are very wide. My personal opinion is I would rather drill and have them know the basics at age 7, 8,9,10, then go into the abstract once the foundations are there. This program jumps around from concept to concept and has a lot of abstract that my kids just weren't developmentally ready for at grade 3.

    On a side note- the games are good. I think it would be good to get a games set going as homework. If you made up kits out of the sets that kids could do at home with their parents it would be good enrichment. But most of the games you could probably make up on your own anyway if that was really of interest.
     
  24. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Tami....ask your administrator to request a sample so that you can see it. This way, you have some of the great ideas in the program without needed to totally switch to the program.

    I still use many of the ideas or alternate methods with my students, but do not teach the program at my level any longer.
     
  25. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    I taught it for two years...decided it was a waste of money. First, there were many mistakes on the student sheets at my grade level. Second, it didn't allow for mastery. Third, it only works for kids that are exposed to it for several years and NEVER move. Fourth, it overwelmed some of my lower students. They couldn't switch from concept to concept.

    I went to my principal half way through the second year and asked if I could use the rest for mulch and do my own thing. She told me to go for it. I (using my state objectives) come up with my own curriculum. It works better for my students and me. The first grade teachers seem to be happier with the results I get since I quit using it.
     
  26. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    Most teachers I know strongly dislike it. There are things I like about it and things I don't. The school I teach at is moving further and further away from Everyday Math and incorporating more and more portions of other programs into our math curriculum because we find EDM goes about things in a very strange order and leaves out some lessons.
     
  27. smurfette

    smurfette Habitué

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    I've never taught with it, but my friend's daughter's school uses it. My friend hates it.
     
  28. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    I have taught EDM in 5th grade for 6 years now. I do not like it anymore now than I did then. First of all, it does not align to our standards, and waiting until common core edition comes out will not help us meet AYP now.
    Mopar described the different algorithms, but they are not really algorithms, they are strategies. EDM is big on showing students different strategies so that the child can decide which strategy is most comfortable for him/her. Unfortunately, some of the strategies-like the lattice method-do not touch on WHY numbers are multiplied the way they are-or stick to place value.
    I am hoping that my district will move away from this program as we are getting ready to pilot new series. Our AYP and individual scores are NOT going up the way the program promised!
    On a side note, a nearby district actually had parents at a board meeting demand that the district stop using EDM immediately!
     
  29. jenneke607

    jenneke607 Rookie

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    Great suggestion. At the very least, you can get the feel of an individual lesson, even if you won't get as much of a sense for the spiral. (The spiral can be frustrating for some.) A lot of teachers complain about how much they have to supplement for basic facts; the fact work is improving with each edition, but, yes, I recommend supplementing. (Do we really expect to find a one-size-fits-all-perfect program out there?) At one of my schools, we do a lot of supplementing in K-2 with Kathy Richardson's "Developing Math Concepts" materials. It's been really helpful.

    One thing I really like about EDM is that it emphasizes conceptual understanding over rote memorization. I like approaches like the partial quotients algorithm for division.

    One thing that is difficult is when students have not been using EDM since K/1st grade, or change schools frequently. Another is that the spiral can be difficult for students that need just a few extra lessons, or the fact that lessons do not always feel linked.
     
  30. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    I have already suggested to her that we don't adopt it. I feel the kids are doing well with Scott Foresman anyway, and I really, really like that program.
     
  31. Lynn K.

    Lynn K. Habitué

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    Many of the local school districts here use it, but in a recent news article, they all said it isn't working (scores on standardized tests are down). We use Saxon which is a spiral approach, like EDM, but we are switching away from it next year.
     
  32. luvin2teach

    luvin2teach Rookie

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    We just got a new math series this year. We went with Scott Foresman which I think is very advanced, but our old math series was about 7 years old so it was a big jump.I dont feel like the Scott Foresman has a lot of supplementary material for struggling students. There is the website that goes with the series but it seems like the topics that my students struggle with are not covered online.

    We were thinking about going with Everyday Math because a lot of our local schools use the program. We had the same comments about the parents not being able to help and about the being all about games. When we were discussing we were going to hold a session for the parents to attend to teach them how to use the program and what it is all about. We have a very supportive community so I think most parents would have been on board but we decided against the program.
     
  33. AMK

    AMK Aficionado

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    EDM works if you have a strong parent component. It is okay but for me in kindergarten it is A LOT of work b/c it is all hands on and we have to make games etc..
    The homelinks - the homework are exploration things for the parents to do with their child and some of our parents do not understand the assignment.
     
  34. midwestteacher

    midwestteacher Cohort

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    Everyday math is not designed to be a stand-alone curriculum, but is being used as such by many districts. It is very difficult for parents to help students because they just don't understand the techniques. They would sent home links to the website, but we are on dial-up because high speed is not unavailable in our area. I can tell you that as a parent, I hated it. My kids were in elementary school when they decided to go to Everyday Math. So they had a couple of years of Everyday Math and then went back to normal math for junior high. Our high school math teachers don't have a good opinion of it either. I think when these kids get to HS, we will see some real problems in math classes.
     
  35. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    midwest, it is interesting that you said it is not designed to be a stand alone curriculum, because the teachers in my district ALL feel this way. However, it was NOT presented that way by the marketers. They made is sound as though this program alone will solve all of our math scores woes. :)
     
  36. teacherhoosier

    teacherhoosier Companion

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    our corporation is considering two programs..EveryDay Math or Envision...
     
  37. AMK

    AMK Aficionado

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    We are not allowed to supplement with any other program now that we have EDM and it is hard. My district says in order for the program to work we must not use anything else.
     
  38. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    DITTO
     
  39. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    My coordinator has agreed NOT to go with Everyday Math...
     
  40. love_reading

    love_reading Comrade

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    I have taught Everyday Math for the past 5 years and there is very little that I like about it. In fact, I think the only thing I do like are the math games.
    We (teachers) have found that we have to supplement with EM because of the spiral curriculum. When there is only one lesson taught during the first semester (in the teacher's guide) on two digit addition and subtraction, yet it is on the report card, how do you expect the students to master that skill?
    Another downside that was previously mentioned was that the parents (I am also a parent) do not understand how to do many of the math problems the children bring home for homework. The algorithms are completely different than traditional methods.
    Another disadvantage is that the math boxes (practice pages) are too difficult for most of my students to do on their own but they are designed as independent practice.
    I am all for a spiralling curriculum if you want to introduce concepts that don't necessarily need to be mastered, but I think a better way to do that would be to devote maybe one lesson in each unit to that process and the other lessons focused on specific skills that are expected to be mastered for each grade level.
    Sorry this is so negative, but choosing a new curriculum is very important since (at least in my district) you are stuck with it for at least 7 years. We still have two more years to go and I can guarantee that EM will not be chosen again.
    Good luck!
     
  41. dianejw

    dianejw Companion

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    Everyday Math is a Great Math Curriculum

    Our inner city school district has been using Everyday Math for 7 years and we have seen our math scores climb continuously. Our district has climbed out of academically emergency to effective during this time period. During the very first year of teaching it is very difficult because students have a lot of gaps in learning from not having been taught the EM curriculum in previous years. Yes, it is a curriculum that spirals and it also lays the ground work for the next year. The greatest difficulty our teachers had in the beginning was pacing ourselves to get through the curriculum. It is human nature as a teacher, I think, to want to make sure the majority of the students have mastered the skills, but with Everyday Math you are taught to keep moving forward because the curriculum spirals. I look at is as though I am building background knowledge for when it is taught again. I can tell you without hesitation that now that we have had the program this long, our students are stronger in their understanding of math concepts than ever before. Every class has come to me in fifth grade stronger in math content than the previous class. That has happened in our district because everyone embraces the curriculum and teaches it the way it is meant to be taught. I love all the different algorithms Everyday Math teaches because students learn that there are different ways to solve the same problems. Plus, all the intervention and enrichment pieces are all in place. If you use all those parts of the math curriculum all students experience success. I would highly recommend this math program to any district who is looking for their students to be high achieving in math.
     

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