K-5 Math Adoption Materials
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Summary: Having student, staff, and community feedback were an important part of the math selection process.
Families, Teachers Share Feedback on Math Materials
To help achieve the goals of the Seattle Excellence strategic plan, Seattle Public Schools initiated a new adoption process for instructional materials to support math instruction in grades K-5 for the 2022-23 school year. The K-5 Math Adoption Committee recommended three finalists for instructional materials – EnVision Math, iReady Classroom Mathematics, and Reveal Math.
As part of the process, SPS educators, families, and community members were invited to review the three finalists and provide feedback. Materials were placed in Seattle Public Library branches around the city, as well as online and at the district’s central office.
Having student, staff, and community feedback were an important part of the math selection process.
Across three Saturdays in March, district math department leaders convened focus groups with 29 families of African American, multilingual and special education students were specifically invited to elevate the experiences, needs and voices of students farthest from educational justice.
Families reviewed each of the three candidates then were asked for feedback about each one. Students and adults cast votes for the choice they most wanted to see in SPS elementary math classrooms next school year. Families preferred enVision Math over iReady and Reveal Math.
“Colorful pictures made the mate enjoyable and helped my child understand the math,” said one parent. Others liked how the curriculum includes plenty of opportunities to practice the math students are learning and provides hands-on materials to help parents know how to support students at home.
First and fifth grade teachers were given one unit from each instructional material to field-test with their students. Fifth grade teachers Megan Barnes, Enrique Black, and Julie Rodriguez were among 18 educators who volunteered to field test one of the three options in their class. Overall, 16 different schools across the district participated.
Rodriguez teaches at Rainier View Elementary, and she reviewed the Reveal Math curriculum. She appreciated how the program arranged the lessons.
“I got to look at it and … see how they had other chapters set up,” Rodriguez said. “I thought it made a lot of sense. It was just really streamlined and really addressed those states standards in a very strong way.”
All three teachers spoke positively about the materials keeping the students engaged. For Black, who teaches at Bailey Gatzert Elementary, he said iReady Math moves away from the traditional way of teaching.
“There’s a lot of student-centered math where they rely on the students to have the conversations,” Black explained. “They rely on the student to teach each other their strategies on how to solve the problems.”
Black said the structure also helped increase participation among students who are farthest from educational justice.
“I have kids who math is hard for them,” he said. “But they’re able to use their words to describe what they what they understand and don’t understand. And because of that, those kids are now able to participate.”
An adoption committee made up of SPS teachers and staff, as well as families and community members first screened materials for standards alignment, bias, and compliancy with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The committee used the results of a needs assessment survey to help develop the criteria used to evaluate the materials.
Barnes teaches math at Hawthorne Elementary. She had the opportunity to pilot EnVision Math with her students. From an educator perspective, she liked having all the materials in one place.
“Finding your own materials every day … it’s this struggle to know what you’re doing … and have what we need,” Barnes said. “So having everything there was really a relief. There was far less prep time once I got the hang of it.”
Having feedback from students, staff and families is an important part of the math adoption process. As a district, SPS values listening to and learning from the community. SPS will continue to make sure all voices are heard, especially those that might be underrepresented in our community.
K-5 Math Adoption Finalist Review and Field Test
Posted: March 2, 2022
The K-5 Math Adoption Committee has recommended three finalists for instructional materials – EnVision Math, iReady Classroom Mathematics, and Reveal Math.
Review of Finalists
SPS educators, families, and community members are invited to review the three finalists and provide feedback. Feedback forms are available on the K-5 Math Adoption Webpage. The finalists can be reviewed by looking at them online through the website.
Materials can also be viewed in person at these Seattle Public Library branches: Beacon Hill, Douglass-Truth, Greenwood, High Point, Northeast, Queen Anne, Rainier Beach and South Park. SPS staff can also view the materials by visiting the JSCEE Room 2765.
One unit from each instructional material will be field-tested. Overall, 18 classrooms representing 16 different schools across the district are participating. The field test will run from Feb. 28 to March 18. The adoption committee will meet during late March to review the results and determine their final selection.
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K-5 Math Adoption Materials Ready for Review
Posted: December 2, 2021
It has been eight years since Seattle Public Schools updated its elementary math instructional materials. To help achieve the goals of the Seattle Excellence strategic plan, Seattle Public Schools initiated a new adoption process for instructional materials to support math instruction in grades K-5 for the 2022-23 school year. The process is now in the first phase where the proposed materials are being reviewed. During this phase, students, families, and other stakeholders are invited to review the math materials online.
Math Program Manager Elissa Farmer said the update was in response to the number of schools opting out of the district-provided curriculum.
“Over a third of our elementary schools have official waivers to use something other than the district-adopted materials, which they have to pay for themselves,” Farmer said. “That means that a lot of schools are spending … money on curriculum they shouldn’t have to be purchasing for themselves.”
Jim Meyer, a math curriculum specialist, said it was worth noting that there are other schools who were unsatisfied with the district’s curriculum, but could not afford waivers to purchase new materials, putting them at a disadvantage.
“They end up piecing together curriculum on a teacher-by-teacher basis which creates inequity,” Meyer said. “Some people are getting purchase curriculum at a high price; some people are getting things downloaded off the internet.”
Meyer said the variation from school to school creates a learning gap that carries over to middle school. Farmer pointed out the current K-5 math curriculum is not aligned with state math standards.
An adoption committee made up of SPS teachers and staff, as well as families and community members first screens materials for standards alignment, bias, and is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The committee used the results of a needs assessment survey to help develop the criteria they are using to evaluate the materials to score each set of materials.
“We want to ensure we are field testing only the best candidates,” Meyer said.
Due to COVID restrictions, families and other stakeholders will not be able to review the materials in person. Materials can be viewed on the Math Adoption webpage. Students will get the chance to offer their input as the choices are narrowed down and field tests begin.
The survey to offer feedback will be open until mid-December. While the survey is available in multiple languages, materials can only be reviewed in English. The adoption committee will consider this input, along with their own evaluation criteria to narrow the list to two or three finalists. Once the finalists are selected, a field test of the materials with teachers and students will occur in January – February 2022.
“We are excited as a district to be able to provide schools and families with high-quality math instructional materials,” Farmer said. “We want all students to have the opportunity to learn their grade-level standards successfully.”