School is out for the summer and during this time of year, we like to share summer resources and discuss ways to combat summer slide. But the usual discussions of summer learning loss have the added weight of early school closures that occurred due to COVID-19. The learning landscape continues to change as we navigate the short term, and prepare for a very different upcoming school year.
Even before the research about the COVID-19 Slide suggested a huge impact on student learning, it was apparent to us at MIND Research Institute that there was space for us to step in and help. We started by providing no-cost access to ST Math for educators through June 30, 2020 and extending homeschool access for families through August 31, 2020.
Beyond that, educators and families spoke and we listened. There was a clear need for resources to keep learning happening from anywhere, whether in-person or via distance learning. More than that, there was a need for free and accessible resources in order to reach as many students and families as possible.
In June, we launched our new instructional resources page on stmath.com. This new page pulls together a collection of free resources designed to support schools and families. This includes a brand new series of free ST Math workbooks, supplemental materials, MathMINDs conversations, and resources that deepen learning and inspire mathematical thinking.
Let's take a tour together of what you will find on our instructional resources page.
Teacher & Family Guidebooks
ST Math guidebooks are a brand new, free resource for teachers and families to support your students' math learning in the classroom and at home. Created by MIND's experts, who are also former teachers and curriculum specialists, the guidebooks are a collection of hands-on activities, games, and math stories to practice and explore math concepts.
These guidebooks are for grades Pre-K to fifth grade. The teacher's guidebook was designed to work with the parent guidebook, but can also be used as a standalone resource and vice versa.
Developing Our MathMINDs
Developing Our MathMINDs is a series of conversations and resources about math that are intended to be a journey of growth with families over several weeks. Each week, MIND's Lead Mathematician and Product Director Brandon Smith and Content Development Manager Nina Wu talked about the adjustments families are making to learning at home, and the opportunities this situation provided for changing our relationship with math.
Some of the MathMINDs content is tied to our ST Math program, but there are additional resources and math experiences that are program agnostic and are designed to support learning at home.
Some of my favorite MathMINDs conversations are the ones that get you up, moving and dancing, all in the name of mathematical exploration!
Additional Resources and Summer Activities
There are so many additional resources and summer activities to enjoy! Permanently on the page, you will find critical resources like the Facilitating Questions poster. There are also helpful learning resources like lists of STEM board games, worksheets on math and movement, JiJi sudoku puzzles, and even recipes that families can bake together.
The additional resources section will change as student needs evolve and as the school year progresses, featuring seasonal math activities, blog posts, and PDFs.
Join Our Community
One thing we know from experience is that we're str0nger together. On the instructional resources page, you can find links to join our ST Math communities. There are two options to choose from: our educator community and our family group.
Educators are our heroes, and they continue to amaze us every day. So many ST Math educators love to celebrate their JiJi spirit, and from that, our school community was born. Our educator community is perfect for teachers, administrators, and math coaches who want to ask questions, share resources, and connect with each other.
We also have a home community for the incredible families supporting their students' learning. Parents and guardians can connect, ask questions, and learn how to best support their learning from each other and ST Math experts.
That's it! You're all caught up and are now a resident expert of our instructional resources page. We hope that you find these free resources helpful.
We're here if you need us and we're rooting for you as we move forward together.
About the Author
Jolene Haley was the Content and Community Specialist at MIND Research Institute. In addition to creating content for MIND, she is an author, avid reader, and lover of iced coffee.