Math Matters in After-School Programs

We are Warren and Eastern Ohio Education Partnership (EOEP) launched today a new four-part educational series for community and non-profit organization leaders to develop the necessary skills, process, and resources to adapt and thrive in a new global environment. The first session shared ways to add engaging, entertaining, district-aligned mathematics curriculum into existing student after-school programs.

“There are so many ways to engage youth in fun math activities, both in and out of school,” explained Stephanie Shaw, EOEP Executive Director. “These activities often draw them toward math instead of pushing them away. It also helps them learn to solve problems and reason logically, improving their learning and performance.”

The first session was facilitated by Dr. Kim Yoak in the Warren City Schools Board of Education offices. Dr. Yoak spent a decade as a K-12 mathematics consultant for Stow-Munroe Falls City School District, and is now an independent specialist working with the Warren City School District and across Ohio, focusing on empowering students and educators with deep learning experiences in mathematics.

Participants from the City of Warren, local school districts, area churches, and other non-profit organizations learned how to encourage after-school program students into a “growth mindset,” praising their math efforts as well as achievements. They discussed in single large and then smaller groups how math is about creativity, connections, and communicating, where questions are really important and mistakes are valuable opportunities for them and their classmates. The group also reviewed how math is more about learning then performing, and depth of understanding is more critical than swift completion.

In addition, the class considered eight standards for mathematical practice from the Common Core State Standards. In addition, Corrie Adams of The Raymond John Wean Foundation shared with participants’ valuable information and examples of the Foundation’s Educational Opportunity strategic priority. The Foundation prioritizes systematic change initiatives supporting Warren and Youngstown City School students’ academic success, primarily in early childhood readiness and access, attainment of skills that improve student outcomes, and readiness, access, and completion of postsecondary education and job training. This educational series was designed to support the alignment of the Foundation’s grantees with the work that takes place in local school districts.

Future educational series sessions will focus on social emotional learning, capacity building, and other topics will be held during winter and spring. Interested community leaders can find out more by writing to info@EOEPartnership.org with a subject line including Educational Series.