Monday, March 11, 2013

PBS Kids Lab

New, high-quality resources for math education keep popping up.

Paula Kerger, of PBS, recently published a press release on the Huffington Post about some new things on the PBS Kids website. " we looked at our work with a critical eye, we realized that we needed to step up our efforts in helping kids learn math literacy. That's why this week we're launching "It All Adds Up," which aims to boost math learning at home -- and everywhere -- by providing resources for parents. With these free resources, which were developed in partnership with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) through the Department of Education's Ready To Learn Initiative, parents can use their mobile phones or computers, or do hands-on activities, to help their children learn basic math skills."

PBS Kids has found what other education researchers already knew: "...nearly 30 percent of parents have anxiety about teaching their child math. In part, this issue stems from the fact that 25 percent of parents find it hard to incorporate math into conversations and activities at home. Math may seem harder to weave into natural discussions and activities in the home, leaving time- and resource-strapped parents unsure where to begin."

I visited the new PBIS Kids Lab and was impressed. There are resources there for parents and teachers. I liked Math Activity of the Day and the context-specific Ideas to Go. There are tons of online activities and mobile apps. I tried a bunch, and one I would recommend is Freddy’s Carnival Games (Ages 6-8, counting). I think it is best to test these first and give specific ones to kids, rather than turning them loose with the entire menu of options.