Local News


Internet can help sharpen math skills

By SARAH LUNDGREN The Brunswick News

Today's Objective: Using the Internet as a resource for your child's mathematics education

For many students, learning a new concept in math class can be a difficult thing. The subject of math runs the gamut on confusing ideas, ranging from multiplication to factoring to quadratic equations - there's even such a thing as imaginary numbers.

For parents, it can be just as tough. Some may not remember anything or might have never encountered something in their child's homework.

Glynn County teachers have an excellent resource for all grades: the Internet. Instead of shying away from technology, school system math coordinator Shelly Bydlinski says teachers, parents and students need to learn to adapt to it.

During a meeting of some local math teachers at the Risley Annex Wednesday, Bydlinski and others discussed a variety of websites that can help with some difficult concepts.

"I just told a parent that the kids were doing equations and to go visit Khan Academy, free and available to all grade levels online," said Dawn Simpson, a math teacher at Jane Macon Middle School.

Simpson said there are countless websites like Khan Academy that provide a way for a child to figure out where they are making their mistakes so they can be avoided in the future.

Beth Oberg, a math teacher at Glyndale Elementary, said finding a website that provides feedback can help both the child as well as the parent.

"If a parent doesn't understand the problem but they're sitting next to their child, they're both getting a lesson for the future if feedback is involved," Oberg said.

The teachers agreed that parents should make sure parental controls are set up, and they should check in to see their kids are using the technology wisely when they are let loose on the computer. While Google is helpful, using teacher pages or the school system website can provide useful links that children will learn from, says Heath Horton, a math teacher at Glynn Academy.

"These kids use these phones for all kinds of things. Why can't they use them for technology? Parents can be supportive and give them that nudge, show them these websites. They'll get the hang of it," she said.

To find a variety of Internet resources, visit the district website at glynn.k12.ga.us. and click on the "Departments" tab at the top of the page. Click on "Curriculum and Instruction," and the next page will have a list on the left-hand side that includes "K-12 Mathematics" and "Instructional Resources for Mathematics" - endless resources for parents and kids. The highly recommended ones were Khan Academy, Intermath and Illuminations

* The Homework Project appears Thursday. Contact Sarah Lundgren at slundgren@thebrunswicknews.com, on Facebook or at 265-8320, ext. 322 to suggest a topic for a column.