Books that will CHANGE your teaching Blog Hop!

Not going to lie… I’m pretty stoked about this post.  Why? you ask…. well, I FINALLY found a group of mathematical bloggers that have joined up and they want to be active in social media!  This is our first “together endeavor” !!  
So…  here’s how this works.  There are 12 posts that are all linked to each other.  You don’t have to download anything from each of us, or even find a hidden letter or phrase… NOPE, you just can hop along as you choose and ENTER to WIN a FREE COPY of whatever book we are writing about!  That’s the potential to win 12 different books!  WOOO!
The book that I am currently in LOVE with is called Building Powerful Numeracy for Middle and High School Students by Pamela Weber Harris.  (click the link to go to Amazon OR enter to win with the Rafflecopter below!)

As a Math Specialist who works in a 5-8 middle school, the biggest complaint I hear from the teachers I work with is that the students have no number sense!  As a district, we’ve been working on improving this from the bottom up (lots of work in the elementary schools!) but there has to be something that WE at the middle school can do to help those who don’t’ have that background knowledge.

As I was reading Harris’ introduction, quite a few of her words resonated with me:

“As secondary teachers, we are often frustrated by the lack of number sense in our students.  Students seem to either reach for a calculator or just shrug and say, ‘I don’t know’ when asked simple arithmetic questions.  They seem ill-prepared to learn higher math because they have not memorized basic facts.  Many students make careless errors with nonsensical results, ye do not recognize how far off their answers are.  We are in the age of algebra for all, yet we have students who were obviously never in the arithmetic for all movement.” (Harris, xii)

WOW!  Does that not say EXACTLY what we have all been thinking?!  She also says “This book is an attempt to bridge [the number fluency] gap, to bring these insights to the secondary world.” (Harris, xiii)

After the introduction, Harris goes into depth with specific examples from 6th grade to Calculus (no really… all the way up to Calculus!) showing examples of how to teach concepts. She focuses her chapters on:

1) Numeracy
2) Addition and Subtraction: Models and Strategies
3) Addition
4) Subtraction
5) Multiplication: Models and Strategies
6) Multiplication
7) Division
8) Decimals, Fractions and Percents: Models and Strategies
9) Decimals and Fractions: Addition and Subtraction
10) Decimals and Fractions: Multiplication and Division

Each chapter not only focuses on a concept, but how that concept builds from upper elementary to middle school to high school.  Harris gives specific examples, models and representations for each concept as well as strategies for how to teach the concepts to your kiddos at a deeper level.

My favorite part is that I can also purchase a Facilitator’s guide (Check it out HERE) as well as a book that contains Lessons and Activities (Check it out HERE) to supplement all of the information that was found in the main book.  I am hoping to use this book with each of my teacher’s this year as a Book Study in a Professional Development setting.

I do hope that you will check out this book via the links I’ve provided OR better yet, enter to win your own copy below!!  If you don’t win, and are a secondary teacher, this book is WELL WORTH the investment!  Every page is chalked full of great information!

After you enter the giveaway, make sure to stop by my friend Jameson’s blog Lessons with Coffee to check out her review of the book “Multiplication Is for White People”

click on the logo to jump straight to Jameson’s post!
Wait! Don’t leave yet! Make sure to ENTER TO WIN!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Categories: instructional math coach and mathematical literature.


  1. I once read a study where they showed most college freshman were not failing calculus because the concepts of calculus were to challenging but rather that they did not have the arithmetic skills they needed in order to be successful. It looks like this book would go a long way towards helping this out.

    The Math Maniac

    • I worked in a school who pushes Algebra for All by 8th grade. We found that many of the kids who have never been able to perform in math before could do the Algebra – it was the arithmetic and the number fluency they were lacking.

      I was super impressed by this book! I’m going to see if we can get it funded for all 24 of my teachers to read!

  2. I learned a lot from reading extending children’s mathematics. Since I was part of the generation that was procedural taught, I really never knew why things worked. I would love to win this book to get ideas for my 7th and 8th grade classes.

  3. Jamie,
    Yet another great book! I love the structure of the book as it really seems to support the essential areas of math. I am still laughing at your comment, “We are in the age of algebra for all, yet we have students who were obviously never in the arithmetic for all movement.” That is definitely our work as educators. Thanks for sharing.

    Mr Elementary Math Blog

  4. This sounds like a great book. It’s so important for us to realize that those teaching at the elementary level are building the foundation for instruction at the secondary level. We can’t move on with making sure our students have the basics like number sense.
    The Research Based Classroom

  5. Another book that deals with numeracy and is well worth the money is called, Number Talks – Helping Children Build Mental Math and Computation Strategies for grades K-5 by Sherry Parrish and can be found at Math Solutions. The book comes with a DVD with many examples from real world settings.

  6. Hands down the best math teaching book I’ve ever read is “Comprehending Math” by Art Hyde. Totally changed how I teach problem solving. 🙂

  7. Elementary and Middle School Mathematics. I just finished my credential year and had to keep my textbook because it was wonderful! ahahhaa I also have two books that have the lives of the great mathematicians put into stories that I plan on one day incorporating into the classroom.

  8. Learning to Love Math and Research-based Strategies to Ignite Student Learning. Both are by Judy Willis, M.D. She’s a neurologist turned teacher. Love her books that pull both her passions together.

Leave a Reply