Math is Figure-Out-Able with Pam Harris

Ep 73: Some favorite numbers

November 09, 2021 Pam Harris
Math is Figure-Out-Able with Pam Harris
Ep 73: Some favorite numbers
Show Notes Transcript

We did it! We made it to episode 73! Why is that an important milestone? Just cause it's Kim's favorite number :-). In this episode Pam and Kim take the opportunity to highlight some important milestones in the Math is Figure-Out-Able movement. We're so grateful you're a part of it!

Pam Harris:

Hey fellow mathematicians! Welcome to the podcast where math is figure-out-able. I'm Pam.

Kim Montague:

And I'm Kim.

Pam Harris:

And we make the case that mathematizing is not about mimiking steps, or rote memorizing facts. But it's about thinking and reasoning; about creating and using mental relationships. We take the strong stance that not only are algorithms not particularly helpful in teaching, but that mimicking algorithms actually keeps students from being the mathematicians they can be. We answer the question: if not algorithms and step by step procedures, then what?

Kim Montague:

So y'all, when we decided to plan episodes -

Pam Harris:

This is gonna be fun.

Kim Montague:

Yeah. We were getting to number 73. And I said, Pam, it's 73. It's my favorite number.

Pam Harris:

And I was like, what?

Kim Montague:

That's a weird favorite number, but it is, it's my favorite number. And so today, we're going to do something a little bit different. We are going to have a numbers episode.

Pam Harris:

Numbers episode, how fun is that? 73. Really? That's your favorite number?

Kim Montague:

It is and always has been, no idea why

Pam Harris:

Like every time, like, it never changes?

Kim Montague:

Everytime. Mhmm.

Pam Harris:

Very cool. Because mine changes a little bit.

Kim Montague:

It does?

Pam Harris:

Yeah. Well, so often, if somebody says, like, choose a favorite number between whatever, often it will be seven. Which it took my kids, I don't know, several years to figure that out. Because I would say to them a lot, Hey, who's gonna win, who's gonna play, who's gonna cook who's gonna like whatever. To choose I would say choose a number between one and ten. And then they would choose a number and whoever was closer won, or lost, or whatever it was. I swear it took years before one day one of them said is your number always seven? And I was like, yep. And from then on I had had to choose different numbers. Maybe I'll have to borrow your favorite number. I mean, it's a little funny that mine seven and yours is 73. That is a little funny. But sometimes it's e. So if someone will say choose a favorite number, I'll choose e. Seven. It almost always has a seven in it, though. So I think that's funny that yours is 73. Yeah. Cool. And then when we realized that we were doing it today,

Kim Montague:

Yes. Today, November 9, it is my parents 47th anniversary, also with the seven.

Pam Harris:

Also with a seven. That's pretty cool. So today, as this podcast is launching, happy anniversary to Kim's parents, we're certainly glad that you had Kim. All right, let's continue on our numbers episode. So some other cool numbers that are out there. 9500. 9500. All right. So 9500. Ready? As of the moment where we're recording this podcast. I've got about 9500 followers on Twitter.

Kim Montague:

Yes.

Pam Harris:

All right! Bam. That is very exciting. I will never forget the day when someone said you really should join Twitter. And I was like, really? Twitter? I don't social media. I just don't even do that. Really? Okay. And I joined Twitter, and then had to figure out Twitter because that's a weird world. And now I've gotten the point where we have 9500 followers. So that's pretty cool. It's been fun. And I thoroughly enjoy the interactions I have with other mathy people, which by the way, everybody can be a mathy person but other math people on Twitter. I'm thoroughly enjoying MathStratChat. If you've never joined us on hashtag MathStratChat we do that every Wednesday night. We also do it on Facebook and Instagram. But we started on Twitter. I think sometimes we get the most action on Twitter, though Facebook's come in and I think we're getting more and more on Instagram as we go. So MathStratChat is fantastic. We also put out some social media stuff on Twitter after we do MathStratChat. We choose some strategies and let people decide which strategy they like the best from the previous MathStratChat. I'm also starting to do strings of problems on MathStratChat. So if you pay attention to like three weeks in a row, on Wednesday nights, the problem that I throw out for the world to dissect and throw in their strategies, then it's actually a string of problems on Twitter. So that's fantastic. I have also thoroughly enjoyed meeting new leaders in math teacher education on Twitter, so Twitter is a good world for math education. Really enjoy that there. Alright, I'm gonna throw out one.

Kim Montague:

Okay.

Pam Harris:

1700. What does that number have to do with things,

Kim Montague:

I love this number. I love this number Kim? because it's such a great opportunity for us to do for other people. 1700 the number of people who have joined us in our three or five day challenges that we have hosted. There's so much fun, so much learning happening. The energy is just super high, and there's so much to take away so a couple of times a year, we host challenges -

Pam Harris:

We call them the you can change math class challenge.

Kim Montague:

Absolutely. Yeah.

Pam Harris:

Totally free.

Kim Montague:

Yep.

Pam Harris:

Follow us on social media -

Kim Montague:

On Twitter.

Pam Harris:

There you go, follow us on Twitter. And we'll announce when those challenges are going to come out. And they're totally free. And we just teach and do all the math. And it's lots of fun. And yeah, 1700 people have joined us so far. Lots of fun. All right, another another cool number, Kim.

Kim Montague:

A really important number. Number 20.

Pam Harris:

And that twenty has everything to do with the number of years Kim and I have been working together.

Kim Montague:

Oh, my gosh, I cannot believe it.

Pam Harris:

It does make me feel a little old. Just a little old. You're young. So, that's good. Yeah. And related to that 20 years for 10 of those years, you were still in the classroom. Yep. You were teaching my kids. Thank you.

Kim Montague:

Yes.

Pam Harris:

Thank you. Appreciate that.

Kim Montague:

You're welcome.

Pam Harris:

And then for the last 10 years, we've been working together as math teacher educators and learning a lot together. Fighting every once in a while, but always pleasantly, always pleasantly. Usually that has something to do with Kim going,Pam, I think you're making an assumption. And I have to go, yah, actually you're right. And then we work it out. And it's fantastic.

Kim Montague:

Everyone should have a partner in their education field that they can work as well with though.

Pam Harris:

Yeah, good. This collegiality is amazing. Yeah, really, really appreciate it. And in those 20 years, we talked about the 10 that you were in the classroom. And you were my kids' teachers. I'll just tell a quick story that I don't think I've told on the podcast up till now. It's not really mathy. But it's a good one. You had my second son, Matthew, for third grade, he still tells the story about how you are the only teacher who we ever got a demerit from. He had to sign the book

Kim Montague:

Listen it was early days.

Pam Harris:

I didn't even know what that meant. And the funny part is he's still really convinced that he shouldn't have had to sign the book.

Kim Montague:

He probably shouldn't have. Nobody should have signed a book. That's the problem. I'm sorry, forgive me.

Pam Harris:

I don't know that I've heard your change from signing the book. We can talk about this some other time. Okay. Anyway, the story that maybe I should have stuck with is, Matthew got strep throat in December. And you worked with us really well, right before Christmas, he got on meds and went back to school and then - or maybe didn't go back to school. And then we had the winter break. You know, we had time off here in the States. And then he went back to school and not too much longer. After he got back to school, he said, I don't feel well again. And I said, you know, whatever. We checked him out. Sure enough, he had strep again, I was like, whoa, that's quick, right in a row. We got him back on meds, he went back to school. So now he's missing school, right before break. And after break. He went back to school, he came home and not very much longer. And he said, I feel like I have it again. I said, Sweetheart, you're on medicine, you can't have it again, go back to school. And poor kid, I should have believed him. I sent him back to school and you're like, he really doesn't look good. And I was like, okay, but he's on medicine, took him back to the doctor. The kid tested positive for strep on antibiotics. And it was crazy. Anyway, I'm making the story too long. But over time, he missed like two and a half months.

Kim Montague:

Yes.

Pam Harris:

And third grade, it was tough, rough going back to school, he was a little anxious to go back to school. He felt like he didn't even know the kids anymore. You were so brilliant through it all. We really appreciated the way that you treated him like a human. You know, it was far more about him and his comfort and being able to get back into school and far less about grades and just all the dumb things that didn't really matter. And anyway, I really appreciated that. Oh you're welcome. And during that year, I got to do some really cool problems strings in the class with my own kid. And I'll never forget that was the first difference versus removal problem. Ever. Did you remember that?

Kim Montague:

Yes, I do.

Pam Harris:

And it was two whole kids that had a clue what I was doing in that problem string. And we talked about it afterwards. And you said something like, I mean, you started a little high. And I was like, okay, all right. Good to know. And it was fabulous. That was a moment when I knew we were going to work well together. Because unlike most of the teachers I worked with you push back, like you were like, have you ever thought about, would you consider? And I was like, okay, little uppity third grade teacher. And it was fabulous because we started a really good working relationship. And yeah, I really respected the feedback that you gave me. All right, let's get another favorite number. Okay, how about 100,000?

Kim Montague:

I mean, it is insane. Over 100,000 podcast downloads. I mean -

Pam Harris:

Bam! Ya'll! Thanks for listening.

Kim Montague:

Yes!

Pam Harris:

Like we really appreciate it. Yeah, on our podcast host site we're now in the top 5% of podcasts. So it's pretty cool. We've got 100,000 downloads for our podcast, and we're on episode 73. And we're gonna keep going. This has been fantastic. Just briefly, every once a while someone will say, what took you so long? And I'm like, come on, we're doing a podcast. Don't knock it. I'll tell you, Kim and I talked for a while about doing a podcast. The whole team, everybody that knew me, you know was bugging me to do a podcast for a while. And I just couldn't wrap my head around what it would mean. And then right before the pandemic and as the pandemic hit. Some of you know, my son Craig, worked for us that summer, he was kind of an intern, worked for us, did a lot of really good things. And then he was, he was in our face. He was like, You should do a podcast. I'm not actually sure whose idea it was for you to be the co-host. Do you remember Kim?

Kim Montague:

I have no idea.

Pam Harris:

Yeah, I don't know. But -

Kim Montague:

We should maybe thank them.

Pam Harris:

Yeah, we probably should. Whoever it was that gave us that idea. Because then I was like Kim. If you were the co host, I would actually do it. Like if you were the co host, it would actually happen. And one of my biggest concerns really was that I was so busy that I just knew things would get in the way and then it wouldn't get done. And I knew to do a podcast and make it successfu, it needed to be consistent. We needed to have podcasts happen. Well, as soon as somebody said, hey, Kim should be the co host. Then I was all over it. I was like, Kim would make it happen. Kim is a bit. Um, what's a good word for this? Organized?

Kim Montague:

Yes.

Pam Harris:

What did you say?

Kim Montague:

I said... Yes, organized is fine.

Pam Harris:

I couldn't even hear what you said. Kim is really organized and she will make things happen. She's a little militant? Can I use the word militant? Oh yeah. So I knew that if I had Kim involved, then it would actually happen. And so I owe a big debt of gratitude, to Kim for being willing to be the co host. And so we could actually make it happen. And y'all, thank you so much for listening and making this podcast go. We really appreciate it. That's awesome. Very cool.

Kim Montague:

Okay. Another thing to be really proud of Pam is the number five.

Pam Harris:

Yeah, we have worked hard for this five.

Kim Montague:

Yeah.

Pam Harris:

Five stands for the number of online workshops that we currently have out. And y'all we have planned more we're working on a sixth right now and we have planned to do more than that. We really want to have an offering K-12. So that every teacher, kindergarten through 12th grade has at least two or three workshops that are applicable for that teacher. Deep dive content workshops that are applicable for that teacher, we don't have it yet. But we do right now have a workshop for teachers, K-eight that are applicable for your content that you can do deep dive into content. So for example, one of them that we have right now is Building Addition for Young Learners. That is for pre-K through second grade teachers, where we really dive deep into developing counting and counting strategies and additive reasoning and what it looks like in pre K, kindergarten, first grade and second grade to make that happen. We also have building powerful multiplication, q deep dive workshop where teachers can really learn all about building multiplication and building from additive reasoning to multiplicative reasoning, the top five strategies to solve any problem, that's reasonable to solve without a calculator, without using an algorithm so that students are really thinking and reasoning multiplicatively. We also have building powerful division, where we outline the four top division strategies that students need to know so they can solve any problem that's reasonable to solve without a calculator. Without a calculator or without the long division algorithm. What does it mean to really reason quantitively and quotitively about division? A deep Dive Into division, thinking about division multiplicatively. Also, we have Building Powerful Proportional Reasoning for you middle grades teachers, where we really dive deep into what does it mean to reason proportionally? And how can you help develop that reasoning multiplicatively and proportionately? Because we know that students need to be able to reason multiplicatively in order to reason proportionately, so middle grades, grades 6, 7, 8, you'll really enjoy the Building Powerful Proportional reasoning. Now, that's four I just mentioned, but we said the number five, right five. So that fifth workshop is free, y'all. And it is called Developing Mathematical Reasoning. And it is all about the underpinnings of everything we do. How do we want to develop mathematical reasoning, not just get answers to questions, but we really want students to develop as mathematicians, that is free, you can register for that and take it anytime we've now made it evergreen. It's so exciting that it's evergreen. Anybody can take it, you just register for it. You have six weeks access to take it. Y'all here's a little known secret, we don't really advertise. If you take it and don't finish it, you just register again. That's no problem. Just take it again. You can have pretty much access to it anytime. In fact, if I can just mention, if you're a leader, and you'd like to have teachers be able to have access to it, but you want to not have to re-register every six weeks, just give me a holler at pam@mathisfigureoutable.com. Leaders we always can make a deal and make things work easier for you as leaders so that you can support the teachers that you lead, we can absolutely make that work. So check out those five workshops: Developing Mathematical Reasoning, Developing Addition for Young Learners, Developing Powerful Multiplication, Developing Powerful Division. Wait, did I just... and the last one! I was even counting. Developing Powerful Proportional Reasoning. Hey, if you're interested to know what's coming out next I'll let you know we are working right now on Building Powerful Linear Functions. That is in the works. But soon after that, we'll want to come out with fraction work. We want to do developing powerful, no wait, Developing Subtraction for Young Learners?

Kim Montague:

Yes.

Pam Harris:

So lots of things on the horizon. Did I mentioned fractions? I don't remember. Definitely fractions are coming, so just know that that is all happening and we're very excited to keep the numbers growing! So y'all some favorite numbers. What's your favorite number? Maybe you can share with us your favorite number and why you like that favorite number. What that number means to you, especially if it has something to do with the Math is Figure-Out-Able Movement, Math is Figure-Out-Able Podcast like share those favorite numbers with us and the next time we do a favorite number episode maybe we'll share your favorite number and why it's your favorite number, what it means to you and math being figure-out-able. Because if you want to learn more mathematics and refine your math teaching, so you and your students are mathematizing more and more. Then join the Math is Figure-Out-Able Movement and help us spread the word that math is figure-out-able!