Friday, July 9, 2010

Until next year!

Hello friends! It's been quite a while since I last posted on this blog. I really apologize for not having a better and more timely conclusion, but this is my temporary break from this blog. It's the summer so not much tutoring has been going on. I have had a really amazing time writing for it and I hope just one person got something out of it.

I am wrapping up my year of service with the Massachusetts Promise Fellowship, Boston Partners in Education, and AmeriCorps. Next year I will be taking on another Mass. Promise Fellowship position at Tutoring Plus in Cambridge. I will be working on a different project to individually support students and help manage an afterschool program in the Cambridge Public Schools. I'd really like to thank Boston Partners in Education for making my first year amazing. I wouldn't be continuing on with AmeriCorps again if I hadn't gotten so much support and learned as much as I have learned.

Don't forget math is still everywhere, I'll keep an eye out for you all :)

I am hoping to return to Boston Partners to volunteer again with Math Rules!, in which case, I'll be updating this blog again. Thank you for visiting, thank you for commenting, thank you for reading along.

Until then, Math Rules!


Friday, May 28, 2010

Wrapping up

There's less than one month left in the Boston Public School year (we're running a bit late because of "snow" days), but Math Rules! will be wrapping up in the next few weeks. I've been working on end of the year surveys for our teachers, volunteers, and students. I also helped put information together for a report. From both of these, I have some good news and good data to share with everyone.

Teacher at the Eliot School - Jennifer DiSarcina (center), winner of Boston Partners in Education's Educator of the Year

This year in Math Rules! -
In raw numbers, we finished the year with 47 volunteers in over 50 classrooms helping almost 250 students throughout the year. Math Rules! volunteers provided an estimated 2000+ hours of academic mentoring and math support for Boston Public students and teachers.

Compared to last year -
*We served 38% more students than last year
*Helped out in 27% more classrooms
*Recruited 25 new volunteers
*Retained 23 volunteers from previous years
*90% of nominated students have a volunteer (up from 70% matched students last year)

Me and my students at the Orchard Gardens

I also took excerpts of volunteer responses from the volunteer surveys and compiled them, all of them are stunning reports of awesome math students!

“G- is an independent young man who knows his stuff. I worked with him one day and not only did he know how to do the problem, he explained it to his classmates. Then he asked if he could move and do work with a buddy. He's a kind boy and I hope he opens up to me more.” – Volunteer at Tobin

Sometimes interesting math poses will help with your math

“He has generally shown his ability of constant focus on the daily tasks. He usually encourages neighboring colleagues to concentrate on the work and is not easily distracted by others. He has a good attitude and a good helper to his friends.” – Volunteer at Tobin

“...the students know me a lot better now. They are always excited to see me, and they've shown more interest in maths as compared to before.” – Volunteer at Tobin

Mr. Marcus requested I take a picture, so studious!

“I can tell that M- tries to remember the details of what I teach him each time we meet. He is getting faster and more accurate when solving math problems. I think math is becoming more fun for him now that he is getting better at it.” – Volunteer at Tobin

“I feel that D- has a lot of potential. I feel he is very sharp young man. I feel that he improves in each class which is very exciting for me.” – Volunteer at Marshall

“M- is very smart. She needs the occasional reminder and follows right on cue. She thinks out the process of the math strategy and then she practices the strategy until she has mastered it.” – Volunteer at the Orchard Gardens

“I've seen B- transform over the months. He used to be really resistant to having a tutor, but he's one of my best behaved students now. He concentrates, separates himself from distractions and tries the hardest problems in the packet. I wish I had more time to devote to him during our tutoring sessions.” – Volunteer at the Orchard Gardens

“N- is a very confident, and beautiful young woman. She is a hard worker. She does struggle but after practicing, the obstacles become less and less of a challenge and she zooms through her math.” – Volunteer at the Orchard Gardens

“…in the last three weeks I've been there I've noticed them becoming more independent and focused.” – Volunteer at Orchard Gardens

“L- is a capable student who is always sure to ask questions about topics she doesnt understand, and keep me informed about her social life. She doesn't always grasp concepts from the start but can work through them with help and works well independently” – volunteer at Quincy

A big thank you to all volunteers and students for participating in Math Rules! this year. It looks like a lot of you all did really well this year. These survey stories are just a brief glimpse into the great work and quality time spent for both volunteers and students.

If you're a Boston Partners volunteer, we hope to see you all at the Volunteer Recognition Event on June 8th!


Monday, May 17, 2010

Good luck 3rd and 4th graders!

Tomorrow and Wednesday, 3rd and 4th graders will be taking the math MCAS at many schools. Good luck!

This is what I gave my students as a good luck + encouragement:

Good luck on your MCAS,

Final tips:

2) Read instructions and problems carefully. Read one sentence at a time. Reread if you need to.

3) Cross off answers that you’re sure are not right.

4) Show ALL work, you can get partial credit!

5) Answer the question in full sentences.

6) Check over your work if you have time.

Believe in yourself and you’ll do fine!