Math & Movement is a kinesthetic, multi-sensory approach to teaching math and literacy that incorporates physical exercise, stretching, cross-body movements, yoga and visually pleasing floor mats designed to encourage students to practice concepts. Our program allows students to physically hop, walk, crawl, dance or touch the mats and banners as they learn, thus using more learning modalities (visual, auditory, motor, and kinesthetic) when practicing.
Math & Movement begins at pre-K, harnessing a child’s natural love of movement and creative imagination to master basic math concepts. The floor mats and banners cover concepts including subtraction, telling time, factoring, cartesian coordinates, money and many others.
The movements in our program help students master concepts while simultaneously offering teachers and students an overall sense of well-being. Incorporating these exercises during the day, before testing, or during transitions, allows teachers and students to feel energized, focused, calm, and prepared to learn.
Math & Movement is composed of six categories:
ACTIVE MATH: WHISPER/LOUD MOVEMENTS
Designed to give your students physical exercise while simultaneously enhancing math and reading ability
ACTIVE MATH: SKIP COUNTING MOVEMENTS
Designed to provide additional physical exercise while learning multiples
SIT-DOWN MATH ACTIVITIES
Designed for quiet time, incorporates stretching
TAPPING AT THE TABLE ACTIVITIES
Designed to be used in between other
activities, while students sit at their desks
HALLWAY MATH ACTIVITIES
Designed to be used walking in the hallway to and from lunch, PE, art, music, computer or the library
MATH ‘N YOGA ACTIVITIES
Incorporates math practice into
popular yoga moves
What Math & Movement does:
• Strengthens numeracy and literacy
• Supplements existing curriculums
• Integrates core subjects
• Engages all learners
• Is research-based
• Supports equity
• Adds additional PE minutes while learning
We Have a Math Crisis
Americans are lagging behind other countries in math. The PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) evaluation of 15-year-old students’ math scores found that Americans rank 24 out of 29 industrialized nations. America sadly ranks behind 23 countries including Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Spain. In addition, the level of obesity in children is at an all time high. The Math & Movement program contributes to the solution of these problems by combating obesity while simultaneously improving math skills and retention.
What are the ramifications of math illiteracy? Recently, I visited the space center at Cape Canaveral. I had the pleasure of listening to the story of an astronaut’s journey into space. At the conclusion of his talk he shared exciting plans for the future of space travel, colonies on the moon and Mars and future exploration of the universe. However, he said, “This may not be possible because we do not have enough American students who are competent in math.” In the US, there are at most 5,000 students studying aerospace engineering contrasted with one Chinese university (out of many) that has over 20,000 students eager to be hired into the space industry. Other professions need math-competent individuals as well.
The following fields all depend on math:
• Medical schools need students competent in math.
• Dentistry, veterinary medicine and other medical fields-all depend on math.
• Engineers build our world and need math.
• The financial industry needs math!
• There are many fields open to our graduates who are competent in math and many foreign graduates ready to fill the vacancies.
Math is Possible for Everyone!
Many students are giving up on math at a relatively young age; it doesn’t have to be this way. Math & Movement gives students a successful experience with math before they develop the “I can’t do math attitude.” It gives them the confidence to take mathematical risks.
Math phobia is rampant among adults with over 60% of Americans affected. Sheila Tobias, author of Overcoming Math Anxiety and Succeed with Math, believes that math anxiety begins by feeling uncomfortable with math in elementary school. Math & Movement short-circuits math phobia by increasing students’ math ability and math confidence.
Commencing Math & Movement activities at a young age jump start a child’s positive attitude toward math. Math & Movement is a movement-based program. The activities catch children’s interest when they are still willing to give math a try.
Math is another language. Children are receptive to languages. We believe that unless we include more math for children in pre-school through grade four, we are missing a crucial window of opportunity in the lives of our young children. Because Math & Movement allows children to learn through movement and visually pleasing floor mats, math concepts become accessible to young children. The depth of understanding acquired in play-like activities will serve as a base for later construction of more advanced concepts.
The intent of Math & Movement is not to create a push-down curriculum, but rather to allow children to experience math success before they have developed any “math phobias” or even any hint that math is hard!