Nelson Mathematics -- Frequenty Asked Questions
1. How should I plan math lessons?
Start with the curriculum objectives and plan activities for students so that they gain understanding of the main ideas in that unit. Choose activities from a variety of resources including Quest 2000, Interactions and other recommended materials. You can follow the lessons in the Nelson program in your daily planning if you choose, as there is a good philosophical match to our curriculum. Students should be learning mathematics concepts through activities and problem solving as much as possible. The teaching of computational skills followed by extended drill and practice should not form the basis of a mathematics program.
2. Why not MathQuest?
MathQuest teaches computational procedures through drill and practice activities. Our curriculum asks teachers to have students construct their own meaning of math concepts through explorations, discussions and problem solving. While drill and practice is necessary to practice a skill, the teaching of procedures followed by extended drill and practice is not recommended. Students with good understanding of the concept require fewer repetitions to master a skill.
3. What support is available as I start to use this program?
3. There is not enough practice in the Nelson program.
In Nelson mathematics students spend more time exploring the concepts of each strand and less time drilling procedures. The more extensive understanding students gain through classroom math exploration activities allows them to master procedures with fewer repetitions.
The Nelson program has more than enough questions to support the concepts being taught and many of these questions expand student understanding. In each lesson teachers should choose the questions that best meet their objectives, and the abilities of their students. The student textbook should serve as a source of questions for the teacher to use with students, rather than as a set of questions to be done by all students as an assignment.
4. My students can’t read the text. How can I help them?
In classrooms where students struggle with the language in the student book teachers should read questions with students, as part of the lesson before assigning independent work. Math vocabulary should be defined, explored, and used as part of every lesson. The Nelson Mathematics Program offers many other suggestions for helping students with reading in math in the teachers’ resource.
5. How do I make this transition easy for parents?
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