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Acclaimed Math Expert: Common Core Builds Understanding

The Hour

The Common Core has shifted math instruction away from solely focusing on memorization to a focus on “helping students understand not only how to get an answer, but more importantly, why a certain algorithm or method works,” the article reports. “Children have a natural curiosity about math, and if all we do is teach them algorithms, then all it is is drudgery,” says Julie Wojciechowksi, a K-8 curriculum coordinator for Wilton Public Schools. “If you understand why you’re doing what you’re doing, then the algorithms will make sense. And instead of packing it inside your head for the test, you can retain and build on it.” This “math check” points out that Common Core State Standards encourage students to explore multiple problem-solving approaches. That helps them to build a fluency with numbers and operations necessary to succeed at high levels of learning.

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