We had a successful family Math night in Thomas Edison Charter School last November 12,2015. We had 98 students, over 50 parents, siblings and relatives who participated. To make this event possible the TECS Math team spearheaded the event plus we have dedicated and hardworking volunteers who stayed up to 7pm to do their part, kudos to the 30 staff members and ten 8th grade students. Indeed, teamwork makes the dream work. I am thrilled to see how everyone enjoyed this event. So far this is the best year in terms of attendance, participation, overwhelming support by the administration and staff that I have ever experienced. I personally think that the rewards like homework pass, dress down to dance pass, cool prizes like gift cards, special treats and a grand prize and family thanksgiving basket played a great part to attract the families to participate.

As a teacher coming from the Philippines, I have seen a great need for the inner city school students to be exposed to multicultural awareness. When I came to the US in 2006 the students thought I am from China, in their young minds they thought Philippines and China are the same. So I introduce them to different countries by using stations in my Math class and name them using different countries- Philippines, Australia, China, Canada, etc. They love the idea that they can walk around the classroom to visit different countries as they answer Math problems. It was indeed a fun learning experience for them so when my principal ask me to spearhead the Family night I thought about using the “Math Around the World” in a bigger scale. I have developed this “Math Around the World” concept to integrate cultural and global awareness in Mathematics. As an educator I go beyond teaching numbers and equations, I make sure that my students learn to see the beauty in our differences. We are all unique and regardless of our color and culture, we are to treat each other with utmost respect. I also want to make sure that my students know that thee is a big world out there and their dreams is not limited to where they are and what they see in their neighborhood. This is also a good reminder that Math is a universal language that we all understand. Math is a bond that connects our big world because math facts are consistent wherever you go… 8 times 5 is equal to 40 whether you go to Spain, Philippines, Italy or anywhere in the world.

So here’s how the procedure goes:

  1. All the participants will gather in the US station (cafeteria or auditorium). They will register their family team or student team (maximum of 5 students if they came without parents or guardians). They will receive a Math passport, Math world map and a pencil. Each team will strategically plan how they will travel the math world by visiting the country stations: Canada, Jamaica, Nigeria, Spain, Philippines, etc. Each country station must have a flag outside the classroom, Math question on the board and may play music (originated from that country) or put up some decoration.
  1. The teams will be given 25-30 minutes to travel around the math world. Using their math passport, they will show their work as they answer the math question or math challenge on each country station. They have to show work and write the final answer on the Math passport. After answering the question correctly, they will receive a visa stamp (sticker stamp) from the immigration officers (teachers/staff assigned on each country) on their passport and run the hallways to go to another country station until they completed all the country stations.
  1. Once they completed all the country stations they have to go back to US station to turn in their Math passport. The first 3 teams from K to 2, 3 to 5 and 6 to 8 will receive prizes.

It is great to see families working together as a team to answer Math problems and enjoy traveling the Math world. Some families are very competitive and they really work so hard and rushing to go from one station to another. Take note: this is the only time the students and their families were allowed to run in the school building so it was a one-of-a-kind experience.

By the way, our school provided dinner for all the participants and we each family/student team registered in the US Station (Cafeteria).

Here’s the format of our program hosted by our two lovely eight graders- Joy and Kylah:

National Anthem TECS Choir
Pledge of Allegiance (Rap) TECS Choir
Opening Remarks Principal El
Special Performance Math Girlz
Math Around the World Procedures Mrs. Flores
Awarding TECS Math Team
Closing Remarks Mrs. Yates

math night 2015Choir Screen Shot 2015-11-14 at 9.08.00 AMScreen Shot 2015-11-14 at 9.07.44 AMrun map


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