"Bringing Children and Math Together in Numbers!"
Would you like to increase your school's math skills while at the same time have parents and children having fun together? Why not provide a Math A Big Deal Event at your school to bring families and math together in a motivational game format. It is very simple, inexpensive and extremely fun for students and their parents.
Go to Math A Big Deal Event Tab at the right for more information
Supports STEM Education:
Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics
As Seen at CAMT:
Conference for the Advancement of Mathematics Teaching
Article in Plano Star Courier:
Event brings children, math together by numbers
Founder aims to change student opinions on subject
Connie Newville founded Math A Big Deal five years ago to add excitement, subtract negativity and multiply the en- thusiasm youngsters feel to- ward mathematics.
On Oct. 9, Newville will bring Carlisle Elementary students and math together in numbers at the school’s Family Math Night, presenting Math A Big Deal, from 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the gym.
“My whole love and passion is to catch kids at a young age and let them know they can do [math] and it can be fun,” she said. “I do think a lot of impressions can be made at an early age. There’s going to be a learning style at my event for every type of learner. You might not be a mathematician or an engineer, but I want you to walk away with a positive attitude about math.”
Newville, who has a masters in mathematics education, said she wanted to provide more hands-on options to children and get families involved in the education process.
“I’m very passionate about family and kids, and I’m passionate about kids loving math,” she said. “... What my event does is it gets math off the page and into the hands of students, which is real life math. I feel like I’m really changing the way kids feel about math – it’s exciting and fun, and you can be successful.”
Each Math A Big Deal event features about 15 or 16 stations for children to rotate through and experience math in new and exciting ways while focusing on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). One station features Anglegs, which are flexible sticks of different sizes that can be used to explore geometry.
“One child might sit there and make right angles and triangles, creating geometric shapes,” Newville said. “Then you get the engineer child who is going to take all those shapes they made and make a bridge or some kind of structure out of those angles and shapes. ... Another kid might be your athlete who doesn’t have your engineer mind but has an athletic mind, so we’re going to work on multiples and we’re going to give them a ball and they’re going to pass the ball back and forth and count ..that’s another station.”
Linda Patrick, principal at
Carlisle Elementary, said she first heard about Math A Big Deal through word of mouth during summer school when a teacher from Wyatt Elementary mentioned it to her.
“I love that it’s hands-on practical games that kids, parents and teachers can use at school but also at home that really sustains and enhances their critical thinking skills,” Patrick said. “They’re having fun and they don’t even realize they’re really learning or think- ing.”
While the Carlisle event is designed for children in kinder- garten through fifth grade, Newville said many schools run through sixth grade, so her program can accommodate a wide range of students.
“I think I’m using math as my vehicle to bring children and families together to have fun with a purpose,” she said. “[The schools] have been over-the-top excited and have had all the
equipment for me to come in – I’m talking the projectors, microphone, stage and facilities.”
And in Plano, the feeling is mutual.
“When I heard about Connie’s program I thought what a great way to provide something new and different for the kids, but also for the staff,” Patrick said. “These are new things that they can get ideas from and bring back to their own class- rooms. ... Kids need to be able to think for themselves nowadays. Before it was so much dif- ferent, but because of the way they’re tested on STAAR, now you have to be able to take something and see it in a greater context and be able to apply it to what you learn in a different situation. These activities cause them to think about how to apply it in sev- eral different settings.”