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! |

jpank

Every Child Can Do Math by Yeap Ban Har

Jamie Riggs

Great book!

Sara Kovach / Dare to be Different - Teach!

Developing Number Knowledge by Robert J. wright, David Ellemor-Collins, & Pamela D. Tabor

Jamie Riggs

Also a great book!

TheElementary MathManiac

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.

Tara

The Math Maniac

Jamie Riggs

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!

Katelynd DeSanctis

Building Mathematical Comprehension: Using Literacy Strategies to Make Meaning by Laney Sammons

Jamie Riggs

Great book!

Sarah M

I enjoyed reading about this text and the middle school perspective. I will be sharing your post. Thanks so much!

Smiles,

Sarah

Jamie Riggs

Thanks so much, Sarah!

Alana Gilliam

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.

Jamie Riggs

I’m right there with you! Procedural boot camp when I grew up! I’ve learned so much in the last ten years of teaching!

The Teacher Studio

There are SO many great books–I am sending the link to this post to my curriculum director–our middle level teachers are in need of some great resources!

Jamie Riggs

<3

All Things Math and Science

How the Brain Learns Mathematics

Jamie Riggs

Hmmm… I need to look into this one! Thanks for the suggestion!

DeLaina Ellis

I love the book Minds in Mathematics. It definitely changed how I teach Math.

Jamie Riggs

Definitely a great book!

Greg Coleman

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.

Greg

Mr Elementary Math Blog

Jamie Riggs

As soon as I read the comment by Weber, I was hooked! I laughed out loud at it!

Karen H

I haven’t read any math books lately. I read a Marilyn Burns during my first year, but I can’t remember the name.

Jamie Riggs

Marilyn Burns has tons of great books! About Teaching Mathematics was one of the first of hers I read!

Brandi Wayment

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.

Brandi

The Research Based Classroom

Jamie Riggs

I couldn’t agree more, Brandi!

Debra Horton

I have enjoyed Good Questions in Math Teaching and anything by Van de Walle.

Jamie Riggs

We did a book study on Good Questions this summer! And, yes… Van de Walle books are always amazing!

Debbie from Southgate, Michigan

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.

Jamie Riggs

LOVE this book! We use it all the time in PD at our school!

Mrs. Hart

I would love this for my 5th graders.

Mrs. S

Asking Math Questions has been the most recent, but Math U See really changed my teaching.

Jamie Riggs

Both great books! Thanks for stopping by!

Morgan

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

Sarah Larson

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.

Brittany Argall

Teach like a Pirate is helping me keep things in perspective 🙂

Stacy

Guided Math by Laney Sammons

Kristen Garcia

How the Brain Learns – David Sousa

MrsEllis212

Books by Van de Walle

mr. m

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.