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What's Math Got to Do with It?: How Parents and Teachers Can Help Children Learn to Love Their Least Favorite Subject

by Jo Boaler

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1464184,622 (4.5)1
A critical read for teachers and parents who want to improve children's mathematics learning. Featuring all the important advice and suggestions in the original edition of, this revised edition is now updated with new research on the brain and mathematics that is revolutionizing scientists' understanding of learning and potential. --Publisher's description.… (more)
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A recent assessment of mathematics performance around the world ranked the United States twenty-eighth out of forty countries in the study. When the level of spending was taken into account, we sank to the very bottom of the list. According to Jo Boaler, who was a professor of mathematics education at Stanford University for nine years, statistics like these are becoming all too common—we have reached the point of crisis, and a new course of action is crucial. In this straightforward and inspiring book, Boaler outlines the nature of the problem by following the progress of students in middle and high schools over a number of years, to find out which teaching methods are exciting students and getting results. Based on her research, she presents concrete solutions that will help reverse the trend, including classroom approaches, essential strategies for students, advice for parents on how to help children enjoy mathematics, and ways to work with teachers in schools.

The United States is continuing to fall rapidly behind the rest of the developed world when it comes to math education, and the future of our economy depends on the quality of teaching that our children receive today. In What’s Math Got to Do with It?, Jo Boaler offers us a new way forward, making this book in dispensable for all parents and educators, as well as anyone interested in the mathematical and scientific future of our society.
  CTLE | Nov 15, 2013 |
I'm always interested in reading books about learning, especially about how students learn math and writing. The author is a professor at Stanford and Sussex, who conducted extensive researches in both United States and Europe (France, England..), trying to find out why math is the most hated subject in school, why most students are failing it, and why the US is behind the other countries in producing above average math students.

She studied groups of students from middle school to high school, and concluded that the math teacher is a very important factor in making math interesting, as well as producing math achievers, peer tutoring and group learning helps both the advance and the average student, out of the box thinking should be encouraged, as long as the right answer is reached.

She has very constructive and logic recommendations for both parents and teachers, to encourage the love of math. I highly recommend this book for all math teachers and parents. ( )
  lovestampmom | Aug 8, 2013 |
At first when I skimmed this I thought it was worth about an hour, but when I settled into reading it I found that I had seriously underestimated the book - lots of good ideas, and a vital message. I wish that I could give this to administration and have them really read it, but there are too many levels of people that would need to read it above them. Lots of practical ideas and things to link to and other books to look at.

Definitely a must read for math teachers. ( )
  sriemann | Mar 30, 2013 |
What's Math Go To Do With It? and The Elephant in the Classroom by Jo Boaler are different versions of the same book. The first focuses on American classrooms, while the second takes a United Kingdom approach. While it's interesting to compare the different examples and approaches, they're basically the same book.

Boaler does an excellent job exploring the importance of math for today's digital citizens while discussing the need for changes in teaching practices.

If you're seeking a book that will generate discussion about changes that need to take place in to the math curriculum. This is a great resource to begin reflecting on current practices and exploring new directions. ( )
  eduscapes | Oct 13, 2010 |
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A critical read for teachers and parents who want to improve children's mathematics learning. Featuring all the important advice and suggestions in the original edition of, this revised edition is now updated with new research on the brain and mathematics that is revolutionizing scientists' understanding of learning and potential. --Publisher's description.

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