# New Year's Resolution

January 7, 2014

2014 is upon us! Are you one of the 45% of all Americans that make a New Year’s resolution?

Common New Year’s resolutions include losing weight, getting organized, spending less and saving more, staying fit and healthy and quitting smoking. But good habits are hard to start and bad habits are even harder to break. 75% of people will break their resolutions within the first week. 71% of those who made it past the first week will break their resolutions by the end of the 2nd week. 64% of those who keep their resolutions past the second week will break them before the end of January. In fact, only 1.2% of all Americans that make a New Year’s resolution will have kept their resolve by the end of June.

However, we need to put in the effort to reap the rewards! Here are some great resolutions to create good math habits in students:

1. Get students to think, not count. Work on having students think about how to get to next number. Stop them if they are counting on their fingers and ask them about the numbers.
2. Reward students for putting in the time with math. Math is a skill that needs to be continually practiced, just like reading, writing, and sports.
3. Baby steps. Set small easily achievable goals. Learn sums of 10 or multiples of 3. This is much easier to measure and not as overwhelming as learning the whole set of multiples and sums.
4. Work on understanding fractions. Read a story each week about fractions. Here is a list of a few of our favorites: Apple Fractions and The Hershey’s Fraction Book by Jerry Pallotta, Fraction Fun by David Adler, Full House: An Invitation to Fractions by Dayle Ann Dodds, Whole-y Cow!: Fractions are Fun by Taryn Sounders, and Give Me Half by Stewart J. Murphy.
5. Stay positive. As an educator, project a positive attitude towards math. Approach math as a fascinating puzzle to solve, not a chore. You can do it!!!!

All of these are easy ways to get students to think positively about and succeed at math.

If you need some help, MANGO Math is here. You can e-mail me at mary@mangomath.com or bring us in forprofessional development. We help instill staff with positive attitudes towards math, understand common core standards and how best to work with kids to increase their understanding. Also check out our Facebook page as we have regular fun math problems, riddles and facts that are fun to share.

Happy New Year and Enjoy Math!!!!