Different Math Classes Working Well for Canyon ISD

Tim Persall, Canyon ISD
Tim Persall, Canyon ISD

If your child is not doing well in math... Research scientists say it may be the way they are being taught.

We grew up solving math problems that sounded like this... If a train with 4 people on board leaves Amarillo at two o'clock, going 70 miles an hour...

OK that's enough of that... At least that's what Canyon ISD is saying.

Ohio State University researchers recommend math classes focus more on math concepts instead of real world examples.

Canyon ISD says they have may the switch and are seeing progress with their students.

Tim Persall with Canyon ISD says, "Our initial results are showing that students are performing better than they did last year where some of the real world examples were used more predominately than concept and key understanding have been this year."

Persall says they want their students to focus on understanding and retaining information.

"They are still being expected to be able to apply that to a situation that would ask them to show their math skills. So that is still the same, but we are not seeing though is that we are just showing them a story problem and expecting them to go solve, we are giving them the skills to get there."

One problem with switching to the system... The change is not unversal. The TAKS test still is very word problem heavy.

"The TAKS test is predominantly a problem solving assessment, where students are expected to be able to demonstrate that they have fluency in their math facts and that they are able to apply those concepts."

Persall says students are still doing well on the TAKS... He attributes that to a more rounded understanding of the subject itself.