Elementary students are learning math in a positive atmosphere and the strategies are having positive results.

Soft SkillsIn Albert Lea area schools, math specialist Chris Quisley wants to see routines established for math courses in elementary schools, which feature Number Talks and guidance sessions for students explaining their strategies.

Quisley says that the district has expectations for performance throughout the year.  Those expectations include these concepts:

• Everyone is a mathematician and able to be a part of the learning.

• Mistakes are acceptable and are the first steps to understanding.

• Questions are important.

• Math is about creativity and making sense, making connections and communicating.

Students use words, pictures, equations and graphs to show math, and have more personal direction in correcting their mistake.They think deeply and slowly, and find out that a math class is not about performance, but about learning.

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