WWU teaches fourth-graders fire-fighting math skills

Children are
often admonished not to play with matches. This week, they learned to “Fight Fires With Math,” a William
Woods University program to help them prepare for the MAP test next month.

teachers enrolled in the course “Teaching
Elementary Mathematics” hosted the event from 8:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday,
March 30, in the
Multipurpose Room of the Helen Stephens Sports Complex on WWU campus. 
Local fourth-grade students
from public and private schools
participated in nine different
centers that were
designed to help them review fourth-grade math
concepts prior to the administration
of the MAP test in April.   
All of the centers included activities based on the Missouri Grade Level Expectations
and were tied to the fire-fighting theme. 
“Students completed activities such as completing an obstacle
course and using their times to
find mean, median and mode;
creative fire trucks with two-dimensional and three-dimensional shapes, and
creating angles with fire hoses; as well as several other engaging activities,”  Shari Means, assistant professor of
education and director of student teaching and clinical experiences, said. 
In addition, local fire
fighters engaged in the
activities with the students.
teachers have studied the Grade Level
Expectations and designed activities to review these concepts. They completed their activities
25-30 times with different groups
of students throughout the day. 
“This gives them an opportunity to practice teaching skills,
such as checking for background knowledge; differentiation, motivation,
classroom management, reflection, flexibility, creating engaging activities,
and assessment,” Means said.
She added, “Pre-service
teachers were excited to build the confidence levels of the local fourth-graders
and motivate them to want to excel on the MAP test.”
For more information, contact Means at 573-592-1697
or smeans@williamwoods.edu.