As you prepare to start a new school year, do you have tips and tools you use in your classroom that you think might benefit your fellow mathematics teachers?

Math Tips and Tools is a new feature on Kentucky Teacher that gives educators the chance to share ideas and resources with their fellow teachers. Math Tips and Tools gives teachers the opportunity to empower other teachers.

Please contact the Kentucky Department of Education’s mathematics consultants Erin Chavez, Krista Hall or Robin Hill if you would like to share a resource with Kentucky teachers.

Week of Inspirational Math
Week of Inspirational Math lessons are a week of activities that inspire teachers to teach open, visual and creative mathematics all year. They are organized into grade bands, but you know what is best for your students, so you might want to venture into other grade level activities as well. Every lesson is accompanied by a mindset video for students.

These lessons are designed by Jo Boaler, her undergraduate students and school children. Boaler is co-founder of youcubed and professor of mathematics education at Stanford Graduate School of Education. She also is the author of the book “Mathematical Mindsets.”

Boaler encourages teachers to let them know how the lessons go via Twitter (@joboaler), the new youcubed Facebook group and other social media.

How to use it in the classroom
I helped support teachers across the state implementing the lessons and tasks from Week of Inspirational Math last school year and found that students saw mathematics in a different way. They collaboratively dove into tasks, bouncing ideas off one another and looking for multiple solutions that make sense of mathematics. Inspiration Week of Math 3 was just released on July 27.

Possible strengths for instructional use
Week of Inspirational Math lessons are a great way to start the new school year when you are trying to establish a growth mindset environment in your classroom. The tasks are designed to invite students into a world of open, creative and visual mathematics. These lessons typically fit into one class period, so there is a possibility to engage in these lessons the first week of school.

This is a free resource, although you will need to sign up to access the lessons.