The goal of this project is to enrich the mathematics curriculum, provide critical and creative thinking activities, and flexible seating to students. 'Hands-On Equations' is a whole brain approach to teaching algebra to students in grades 3, 4, and 5. 'ThinkFun Games' are individualized critical and creative thinking, strategy games that promote STEM concepts and allow students to work at their own pace. 'Flexible seating' allows for physical activity during the school day which leads to better learners, better behavior in the classroom, and better student health.

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Enrichment Math Curriculum, Creative and Critical Thinking, and Flexible Seating

grant photo
School:
Anona Elementary School 
Subject:
Other 
Teacher:
Erin Isaacs 
Students Impacted:
35 
Grade:
K-5 
Date:
September 1, 2017

0% Funded

 

 

Only $907.25 Needed

 

Goal

The goal of this project is to enrich the mathematics curriculum, provide critical and creative thinking activities, and flexible seating to students. 'Hands-On Equations' is a whole brain approach to teaching algebra to students in grades 3, 4, and 5. 'ThinkFun Games' are individualized critical and creative thinking, strategy games that promote STEM concepts and allow students to work at their own pace. 'Flexible seating' allows for physical activity during the school day which leads to better learners, better behavior in the classroom, and better student health.  

 

What will be done with my students

These enrichment and seating initiatives are geared to meet the Multiple Intelligences, per Howard Gardner, of students. Advanced students need to have their thinking stretched to meet their learning potentials.

1) Hands-On Equations meets the mathematical/logical needs of students. It is a fun way to teach algebra and a whole-brain approach to teaching fractions to students in grades 3, 4, and 5. The lessons move from concrete manipulatives to drawn representations to numerical/alphabetic expressions. After learning the foundational concepts of algebra, students are introduced to word-problems that require logical, multi-step reasoning to solve. With these foundational skills learned in elementary school, students are more prepared for advanced and accelerated mathematics coursework in middle school.

2) ThinkFun Games meet the visual/special, intrapersonal, and linguistic needs of students. ThinkFun games are designed to help students develop STEM skills. ThinkFun Games help ignite creative thinking by giving students the freedom to play with less structure and without the limitations of right and wrong solutions. Students improve their development and creative and critical thinking, problem solving skills. This is free-form learning that teaches students that they can make their imagination a reality with resourcefulness and ingenuity.

3) Flexible Seating meets the kinesthetic needs of students. Flexible seating provides students with ways to move and direct their energy in order to promote more active engagement in the learning process. The ability to move around more while sitting on stability balls can make students more attentive. Research has found that is a neurological pathway that goes from your body's balance and movement system to your alert system in your brain. Movement actually allows for alertness and attention.
 

 

Benefits to my students

1) Hands-On Equations: Studies in more than 135 classrooms in 17 states involving more than 2500 students have yielded unequivocal evidence of the ability of elementary and middle school students to quickly learn basic algebraic concepts through the use of the Hands-On Equations method of instruction, and to transfer their learning to the pictorial representation. By first teaching the concept of equivalence non-symbolically, using the balance model or using concrete objects, and only afterward relating that learning to the symbolic notation, we can provide young students with a successful introduction to the relational meaning of the equal sign. (from the research on the Hands-On Equations website)

2) ThinkFun Games: I know from experience that students love playing ThinkFun’s award-winning and fun games, brainteasers and logic puzzles. As their teacher, I know that these games are proven to help stimulate crucial brain development in logic, visual/spatial, math, language, focus and reasoning skills, preparing children for a world that revolves around STEM skills. Educational games are an ideal way to strengthen specific skills, and ThinkFun games are invaluable tools for students with a range of special needs, including students who need to be academically stimulated.

3) Flexible Seating: There is a growing body of evidence that supports the relationship between both physical activity and improved cognitive and executive functioning, which play a significant role in goal-directed behavior and the ability to concentrate. Improved executive functioning allows students to organize and prioritize tasks and information. Flexible seating includes burning more calories, using up excess energy, increased motivation and engagement, creating a better oxygen flow to the brain, and improving core strength and overall posture.
 

 

Describe the Students

I teach a K-5 gifted program with 34+ students (and growing), who I meet with daily. They are a unique, inquisitive, creative, and very diverse population of learners. However, these students can also have difficulty processing the intensity of their emotions, struggle with attention issues, and some are duel-diagnosed with other learning needs. My students have a wide range of learning styles and strengths and need enriched mathematics curriculum to build strong algebraic foundational concepts; enhanced creative and critical thinking, problem-solving, STEM based games; and flexible seating that allows the students the opportunity to meet their kinesthetic needs. 

 

Budget Narrative

1) Hands-On Equations: The class set Hands-On Equations Learning System includes twenty student kits, classroom worksheet reproduction rights, teacher's demonstration balance and demonstration game pieces. This is the base set that would allow me to work with all of my 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students. The additional classwork sheets are a set of ten additional practice equations for each lesson of Hands-On Equations and accompanying answer key, which would allow for additional practice and meaningful homework.

2) ThinkFun Games: A wide variety of games allows all students in grades K-5 to participate at their appropriate level. Each game has (on average) 60 challenge cards which allows students to push their thinking from year to year. The games focus on a variety of skills including visual perception and reasoning, logic and problem solving, word and language skills, STEM and creative thinking, and brainteasers. (ThinkFun gives teachers a 20% discount if ordered directly - which was factored into the price listed)

3) Flexible Seating: Students with kinesthetic needs require the freedom to wiggle when they're tired or excited. Physical activity is linked to higher academic performance, better health, and improved behavior. 15 stability balls with legs would allow all students the opportunity to use flexible seating and meet their kinesthetic needs.

Any additional funds received would be used for additional seating or other body/mind tools and curriculum for students.
 

 

Items

# Item Cost
1 Class Set of Hands-On Equations for teacher and twenty students [C-1020] $195.00
2 Additional Classwork Sheet [CWS-1000] $25.00
3 Color Cube Sudoku x 2 $47.97
4 Chocolate Fix x 2 $47.97
5 Path Words x 2 $47.97
6 Rush Hour x 2 $47.97
7 Rush Hour Jr. x 2 $47.97
8 Tip Over x 2 $47.97
9 A-ha Brainteasters (8 in set) $19.99
10 Shape by Shape $11.99
11 Square by Square $11.99
12 Block by Block $11.99
13 Brick by Brick $11.99
14 Hopper x 2 $23.98
15 FitPro Ball 16.5 inches Item #EL13033L x 15 ($20.50) $307.50
  Total: $907.25

0% Funded

 

 

Only $907.25 Needed

 

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