The Math Anywhere program at ESD 112 aims to build positive math experiences for students outside of school with the idea that math can be fun anytime, anywhere. Now the program is moving into the classroom, thanks to grant monies from Washington STEM and a partnership with the Northwest Early Learning Coalition (NWELC).
In fall of 2022, NWELC teamed up with Math Anywhere creator Molly Daley to offer free courses for PreK and elementary educators through the Canvas online platform. The five sessions cover how to implement the Math Anywhere approach in the school setting, and the fifth session in the series went live in June 2023.
The online platform for the courses has allowed Daley to invite other educators from across the U.S. and Canada who are well known in the math community to join her, such as Christopher Danielson, author of the books How Many? and Which One Doesn’t Belong?. Danielson and others offer insight into how to have math conversations that are fun and engaging and open math thinking up in a way that invites contributions from everyone.
“It really is so easy to invite math into everyday experiences and conversations,” said Daley. “There are many creative and brilliant ways to think about and play with math outside the walls of the classroom, and I thought it would be ideal to include the voices of people doing this work in different ways in different places. I am so grateful to those that took the time to share their ideas. We were able to include interviews in each and every session.”
Math Anywhere was first introduced in 2017 at the Vancouver Library in downtown Vancouver, WA. During popular storytime events, Daley distributed library-themed postcards with math games to families and explained the concept. The games on the cards include photos taken of objects in the Early Learning Center of the library. Since then, Daley has expanded the creative program to provide activities across the community and beyond at restaurants, movies, community events, the fair, and any other places where children and families gather.
The Math Anywhere Canvas series is free through the AESD Canvas account. Learn more about the sessions and enroll on the Math Anywhere Professional Learning page.