Letters to the Editor

The group is integral to island education

For the past two years I, and many others, have been teaching to the Common Core State Standards. We have been doing this work while using a variety of sources. In this time I have been witness to a change in the students’ attitudes toward math. Students who have started math with the idea that they are not good at math or that they don’t like math have begun to tell me how much they like math. They are also beginning to notice that they are in fact good at math. All students are seeing that their ideas and strategies are important.

This school year I have been a member of the curriculum committee, which has been investigating potential math curriculum that supports our work in teaching the Common Core Math Standards. A lot of work went into the decision to recommend the adoption of a new math curriculum, Bridges. After piloting Bridges, I feel this curriculum supports quality math instruction. It is hands on, provides opportunity for all students to participate in discussion where their voices are heard and important, and it allows students to show their thinking to others.   Another important aspect that was considered was that Chautauqua has not had an updated math curriculum in 10 years. With new math standards and 10-year-old curriculum, it is time to update.

The Vashon Schools Foundation is a contributing factor to the adoption of new math curriculum. In their continued efforts to raise money to fund education in our community, the schools foundation is integral in the level of education that we can offer on Vashon. I again am thankful for the contributions made by our community members that enable me to teach our students.

— Shanon Browne
Fourth-grade teacher, Chautauqua Elementary School

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