Free Lessons

Stanford's youcubed Offers Free K–12 Math Lessons

Stanford University’s youcubed math center has released a series of free K–12 math lessons in time for the resumption of school.

The Week of Inspirational Math (WiM) lesson series for teachers, parents and students includes five lessons that offer students open, thorough mathematics experiences that intend to inspire creative thinking and a growth mindset. The lessons are accompanied by free motivational videos created by Stanford professor Jo Boaler and her undergraduate students.

Last year, a similar set of lessons for the WiM were downloaded approximately 333,333 times and were used in every state across the country. When surveyed, 98 percent of the teachers said their students were engaged when working on the lessons, and 96 percent of the students surveyed said they now believe they should keep going even when work is hard and they make mistakes.

The lessons were developed by Boaler, an award-winning math professor, and the team at youcubed. The lessons are designed to encourage creative mathematical thinking, as well as visual mathematics incorporating fingers, manipulatives and motion in teaching and learning various concepts. The lessons provide opportunities for students to draw, visualize, discuss ideas and work with models in mathematics — teaching math ideas visually through pattern study and generalization. The lessons ask students, at regular intervals, how they see mathematical ideas and ask students to represent those ideas in a multitude of ways, including through pictures, models and graphs.

“The Week of Inspirational Math resources engage students as creative problem solvers and help them develop a growth mindset about mathematics, which is known to aid students in their mathematical development,” Boaler said in a prepared statement.

To learn more about the WiM and to access the lessons, visit youcubed’s website.

About the Author

Richard Chang is associate editor of THE Journal. He can be reached at [email protected].