There is an elephant in the room…
And this elephant is creating quite the stench.
The numerous discussions happening around the country regarding EngageNY, a “free” math program, are snow balling. More and more school districts are considering adopting this program, as others are dumping it (no pun intended).
What do you know about it? Where did it start? What’s its history? Is it “free”? How much did it cost to write? Who wrote it?
Or a bolder question: What in the H. E. double hockey sticks is this?
I’m often tagged and asked to join discussion threads with these questions, amongst numerous others. I’ve been very vocal about my thoughts regarding this math program, and my angst regarding what harm it is causing children. I do not fear discussing the elephant in the room… especially an elephant causing such a stink. How could I not speak up? As a 26 year math educator, I find very little in this math program mirroring solid research about how young children learn mathematics.
The Journey I’ve Traveled
My school district approved this program at a school board meeting in December 2013. It did not go through a review process with a group of math experts in the district. In fact, the math committee reviewing math curricular materials was disbanded in the Spring of 2013. Why? The reason given was there were no “viable math curricular materials to review that align with Common Core”.
Bye Bye Math Committee.
Yet, in November 2013, a person downtown (hired for one year in a .5 position) was instructed to put together a binder of EngageNY sample materials. This binder was presented to the Spokane School Board in December 2013. Parents were in the audience with letters from New York State teachers with recommendations to avoid this math program. It still was approved.
Those of us who have had a career in math education were not in the loop.
In January of 2014, the roll out of this program began with teachers using one to two of the modules to get their feet wet. I attended a professional development session in the Spring of 2014 with a group of teachers, and those presenting and training us were teachers in their first and second year of teaching.
I was astounded as I sat quietly, (internally steaming), in the Professional Development session. Those of us who have had hundreds of hours of math education training, (I myself a 25+ year educator with a Master’s Degree in Teaching Mathematics), sat for two hours listening to two young, well intentioned teachers, trying to train us on an EngageNY Module… a program they had very little experience with themselves.
Where were the district math experts in this process? Why didn’t the district call back the math committee to review the binder? Why the rush? Why no discussion? After all, this would be placed in teacher’s hands and used with children.
C H I L D R E N.
I left the training with a pit in my stomach. I reviewed the lessons in the first grade module and knew instantly this was not how young children learn mathematics. It is riddled with worksheets, direct instruction, and a lot of sit and get. As I drove home, the nausea in my belly churned. Ultimately, as an instructional math coach, my job would be to assist teachers in implementing this program… with “fidelity” of course.
The 2014/2015 school year hit, and the majority of teachers opted to fully implement the program alongside implementing a new ELA program on top of it (Journeys). Currently, in the 2015/2016 school year it is no longer optional. It is required.
The comfort statement we all heard was, “This is just an “interim” math program.” Somehow, it being an “interim” program, justified its use. We can put something in front of children because it is merely an “interim” program. As a parent of a primary aged child, and as an educator of K-6 children, just how is this program an “interim” math program for them? This program will be in front of children for four years until a permanent adoption will be made.
How is this “interim” for a 2nd grader? A 2nd grader who will be taught from a program with NO research to back it, for 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade. This is four years of a child’s foundational mathematical career.
My own 2nd grader shared his thoughts throughout his first year being exposed to the program. “Mom, I’ve been waiting for math to get more challenging. And now it is. But in the wrong kind of way. They are now making the easy stuff harder. I already know how to do what we are doing. The easy things I already know… I now have to do in a hard way.”
And the “free” word attached… adding to the justification of its use?
The copying alone to implement this program in a school district Spokane’s size is $3,000,000 a year. In four years time, Spokane will have spent $12,000,000 in copying alone.
The History and the Money Behind EngageNY and Eureka
“Where did this unprecedented scripted curriculum come from?” Carol Burris, New York State Principal of the Year, asks.
“The New York State mathematics curriculum was developed by an organization located in Washington D.C. known as Common Core, Inc. According to reporter Jessica Bakeman of Capital New York, Common Core Inc. was awarded three large contracts from the New York State Education Department: $3,323,732 for K-2 curriculum, $2,715,958 for grades 3-5, and $8,108,919 for grades 6-12.
That is a total of $14,148,609 — or more than $1 million per grade level project. Bakeman broke the story about the high costs of the New York State modules, which you can read here. To put this expenditure in perspective, my school district, Rockville Centre, generally pays less than $1,000 for a grade level curriculum project.
According to the story, New York Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch bragged that New York State is the only state using its federal Race to the Top dollars to develop curriculum; it has spent in excess of $28 million on curriculum in English and Mathematics.”
Therefore, a company, not in New York State, called Common Core, Inc… located in Washington D.C. was contracted to write the EngageNY Curricular Materials.
How many of us were led to believe this was written in New York by a group of educators?
Not. The. Case.
Common Core Inc. and Gates Foundation
“Let’s go back to 2007… the year that Common Core Inc. was founded, three years before the standards were made public. In 2009, it received over a half million dollars in the form of a grant from the Gates Foundation to write curriculum for standards that had not yet been released nor adopted by state.
Last week, Catholic Education Daily reported on the connection between Common Core Inc. and the Gates Foundation in a story entitled “Common Core is Curriculum, Contrary to Advocates’ Claims.”
The story reports that despite Bill Gates’ claim that there was no need to build national Common Core curriculum, he has, through his grant program, quietly funded its development in excess of $10 million, with Common Core Inc. The Gates Foundation appears to have a partner in New York State when it comes to curriculum development.
The New York State Regents Research fund has received millions of dollars from the Gates Foundation to further its reform agenda. But more importantly, the State Education Department has helped finance the effort to create curriculum by using more than $28 million in Race to the Top federal taxpayer dollars. And it appears that one of the recipients, Common Core Inc., intends to influence curriculum beyond New York State. A search of the Common Core Inc. site shows that the organization will sell textbook editions of the work that they did for New York, thus leveraging New York’s tax dollars to launch a textbook series.”
For Carol Burris’ full unmasking of the truth: Follow the Common Core Money: Where are Millions of Dollars Going?
Eureka Math is Born
So… just what is the “textbook” series Common Core, Inc… intended to launch? Well… The Common Core, Inc. group saw dollar signs. After all, school districts across the United States were tapping into this “free” program. So Common Core, Inc. formed a new “math group” and named it Eureka. Eureka then bought the rights to all of the Common Core, Inc. materials. The online version many school districts are using is the Common Core, Inc. version. It is riddled with errors… but it is “free”.
Eureka then cleaned up the errors. However, it is essentially the same exact program. Use the old EngageNY version for “free”, or use Eureka’s cleaned up version for a price.
Mercedes Schneider reveals the transition from EngageNY to Eureka in her research: The (NY, DC, LA, and CA) Story of Eureka Math. There are no major changes to the EngageNY materials. This was also confirmed from a Eureka trainer who came to Spokane last year.
No. Major. Changes.
It. Is. The. Same.
Oh! But wait! It just got another new name… Eureka is now calling their incredible math program Great Minds. You can read all about it here: The Eureka Difference.
Eureka proclaims, “When implemented faithfully, Eureka Math will dramatically reduce gaps in student learning, instill persistence in problem solving, and prepare students to understand advanced math.”
Yet, isn’t this the same exact curricular program developed by Common Core, Inc. at New York State’s expense? And started with money from Gates even before the Common Core Standards were unleashed?
Many school districts have come to learn the fallacy and are saying good-bye… even Spokane has done some back peddling and teachers are being told they can differentiate and utilize other curricular materials to enhance children’s mathematical learning. Why? Because EngageNY/Eureka does not work for a large number of children.
Local School Board in Louisiana Votes to Dump Common Core Math … If you read the article, what they are really dumping is Eureka Math.
The Concerns Run Deep
Where do I start?
Perhaps with the voice of a teacher? A teacher in New York forced to implement what she knows is not right for her students…
My personal list:
- EngageNY/Eureka is not differentiated. It assumes children come to the classroom with the same skill set.
- The pacing is horrendous. It goes way too fast in some modules and way too slow in others.
- It assumes children “get the math” in one lesson, because the homework sent home in the evening is on the new learning that occurred on that day. As educators we must continue to focus upon the purpose of homework. In title schools this widens the achievement gap… what help do the most struggling learners receive at home? Oh, that’s right… Eureka has parent videos so they can watch the lesson that happened that day in class. Hmmm… great for the parents who have internet access at home.
- It is plum full of worksheets.
- It asks children to do speed “sprints” on math they do not yet understand. Go fast! Go fast! I watch children doing these sprints and every answer is wrong. They are practicing for speed, skills and concepts they have not yet mastered. Goes against tons of research.
- It compartmentalizes learning. Do this for 3 minutes, then this for 18 minutes, then this for 33 minutes, then this for 6 minutes. It is all neatly packaged in a 60 minute lesson. And then on to tomorrows lesson… assuming every child got the 60 minute lesson from the day before.
- The DOK (Depth of Knowledge) levels of learning are low, levels 1 and 2.
- The rubrics written for the module assessments are tied directly to the models EngageNY/Eureka expects them to use. If a child solves a problem in another way, they cannot earn a level 4.
Side note: Even more lovely… Spokane School District has set up the Eureka Math Lessons in a Pacing Guide. After every two to three modules the students take a Math Benchmark Test through Amplify. (Spokane School District paid Amplify to write custom Math Benchmarks based on EngageNY/Eureka Modules… more $$$$ spent). The pacing guide and looming benchmark assessments assumes children master everything in 60 minutes every day, can move quickly through math skills and concepts, and complete each module as scheduled. Teachers all over the United States are finding this to be untrue.
The lessons Do. Not. Take. 60. Minutes.
Furthermore, one of my grade level teams just finished the first Math Benchmark Assessment through the Amplify computerized test. Not one child “met the standard” according to the Amplify Test on the first two Modules. The teachers teaching Eureka with “fidelity” and “faithfully” didn’t get the results.
A) Crappy Teaching?
B) Crappy Program?
C) Crappy Test?
I’ll vouch for all three teachers. Awesome instruction in all three classrooms. So… the conclusion is… ? Need I answer?
Okay, I can’t resist…
I think educators are being asked to hug a turd.
Correct Answer: B and C
Two turds in a pod.
After the Amplify Test and “analyzing the data” what solution are we left with as educators? Move on to Eureka Module Three and Module Four to prepare for the next Amplify Math Benchmark Assessment. After all, No Child Shall Be Left Behind.
EEE GADS! This is not teaching and learning.
And it stinks.
I will end with a quote from a well-respected math educator in Spokane School District. She read the New York Teacher’s comment above and responded with:
“I could have – and should have – written the above paragraph last year when I did the first module. I can add tears to the experience. The kids’ and mine. This year isn’t any better. My kids will have no number sense. There is nothing. None. No room to show their thinking. A new book on my porch – mindful mathematics – yesterday reminds me of what is important to teach my kids: how to think, not what to think. What’s important: flexibility, accuracy and efficiency… what’s not important is being shown a strategy and being expected to perform it all in one lesson. Quite the opposite of what’s best for kids. I am not buying into this. Can’t do this to children and their parents. I respect them as learners too much.”
Numerous dedicated, hard working, and talented teachers know exactly what EngageNY (aka Eureka) is: A Common Core Dropping.
“I’ve been handed a turd. You can ask me to blanket it with floral spray to mask its’ odor. However, it is still a turd.” –Ryan Grant, 5th Grade Teacher, Medical Lake School District commenting on the EngageNY Math Program.
RAZ ON FIRE
- Why Isn’t AFT and New York More Enraged About EngageNY?
- Crazy Crawfish’s Blog: Louisiana’s Texbook Selection Shenanigans
- Is NYSED Admitting the EngageNY Modules are Crap?
- Five Things EngageNY Didn’t Intend to Teach My Kid
- In Cumberland, New Math Lessons Replace Investigations
31 thoughts on “EngageNY Math, now Eureka, A Common Core Dropping”
Thank you for posting this. I am DYING right now struggling to teach these lessons as a student teacher. I see some benefits with the sprints and skip counting for multiplication and how the curriculum spirals, but so many of the kids are just plain lost, especially as we get into the associate and distributive property as they relate to multiplication and division. My CT is a gem and can actually teach the lessons with competence in a way that resonates with the kids, but she pulled me from teaching them for awhile, because I just couldn’t do it. This is my week to prove that I can do do it to my supervisor and the principal, good luck and prayers are appreciated
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Wishing you the best… good teachers can make anything come alive for children. EngageNY/Eureka take a lot of pulling magic out of a black hat. -Raz
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Thanks for my encouragement, I’ll do my best to sneak a little fun into it!
Dear S.K, I’m sure you already are… I have no doubt. I’m impressed with so many teachers who find a way to breath life into “poopy” programs. -Raz
Thank you. As NYers are standing up and speaking out to the Common Core Task Farce, I applaud this blog for being an clear and accessible explanation of what is wrong with EngageNY and the Common Core math modules.
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Thank you for your response, cmzirkelbach! Isn’t it interesting how New York found this to be a program that isn’t effective. New York ahead of the other states, yet across the land, in Washington State, we think we can implement and not learn from the previous states implementation. It astounds me. Literally. I am hoping with this kind of information, and some boldness in speaking out, my district will rid itself of it sooner than the four year proposal. -Raz
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Thank you for posting this. I am the NY First Grade teacher you quoted. I have over 20 years teaching experience, most of it in first grade. I have never seen anything so horrible as Eureka Math Modules. Thank you for including my comments in your post. I truly believe the more we speak out and the more we spread the word, the more change we can create.
I despise Eureka Math. I see no redeeming qualities about this program. Our district used Everyday Math from University of Chicago for 15 years. It was a well researched, vetted and field tested program grounded in developmentally appropriate practices compared to what we are now using. After abandoning EDM in favor of HMX Math Expectations, I thought it could not get worse. However, Eureka has now set the bar even lower. From what I was recently told, the reason we do not have a year’s worth of materials in our classrooms yet is because they are STILL WRITING IT. Not field testing it, not piloting it, but STILL WRITING THE FIRST GRADE CURRICULUM. I’m appalled.
Please keep exposing Eureka and CC for what it is. I wish our Math specialists had not drunk the kool-aid on this one. Instead, the program was adopted and implemented over the summer. Curriculum specialists were sidelined and new “math coaches” were hired. It’s terrible. We need more voices like yours!!!
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Hi Rubykatie!!!! So So So Happy to hear from you! So thankful you found this and saw your quote. I usually ask for permission, but there was no name attached so I write what people say anonymously. Yes! We must speak out! I have become more and more bold… I have excellent credentials and there are a limited number of math experts. When I first starting exposing the truth, I would get to school and think my pink slip would be waiting for me. So far, a year has passed and no pink slip. I have started to make appointments with school board members and others who can possibly make a difference.
No one in my district really questioned this at first. No one. I was a lone voice in the night. As teachers started using it, the truth began to surface. Even other math coaches in my district are seeing it for what it is. I met with the district elementary coordinator last year and have opened the door to talk about this… Someone has to. Our children’s love of learning is at stake. This will impact them for the rest of their lives!
Thank you for writing what you did! Thank you for speaking up! One person speaking up gives others the courage to do the same.
So honored to “meet” you… so honored you took the time to write a comment here. Others will read it and know we are a growing group of outstanding educators who know how to teach our children! Would love to become friends on Facebook. I post often.
Send this blog article to your math specialists! LOL! Or send me their emails and I will… Kee Hee.
Wishing you all the BEST! Do whatever you can to tweak the lessons and make them come alive for children.
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Reblogged this on Saving school math and commented:
When I first looked at Engageny math I thought “ghastly”.
I am not alone. Read on…..
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@Howardat58… Hi! Ghastly is a perfect word… So is turd. LOL. Thank you for commenting! -Raz
I am a NY teacher…high school math….HATE the modules….refuse to use them. Fortunately our administration and board are allowing us to be flexible ( which I will interpret as ignore) regarding the modules. I have been teaching for 20 years and know better. The young teachers in the elementary school are all trying to use the modules because they don’t know any different and no, the kids are not doing well. Thank you for a great article . I agree 100%.
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Dear Used to Love NY,
I find them terrible too. It just fries my gizzard when I see Eureka’s videos and teachers smiling saying how much they love the modules. I often wonder if they are in schools with high social economic status and children are already at grade level entering their rooms. (Or who is paying them to smile) No way these modules work for children who struggle in math or who are one to two to three grade levels behind. Mathematics is a science and about patterns and relationships. Children take time to muck around with the big ideas to make sense of them. Too many stories of children in tears. This is not the way to go about causing children to fall in love with the study of mathematics. Rather, they dread it… especially if taught in the “marching order” robotic, scripted program like EngageNY/Eureka. -Raz
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Thank you again for speaking aloud what we all experience daily! I have a masters in k-8 mathematics education and yesterday I walked around my room at the end of the day crying and gathering piles of materials and vowing to NEVER teach from that pile of crap ENY our district is trying to serve our precious children! I have always loved and been passionate about teaching math as a teacher, a math coach and a PD trainer. Now I HATE teaching math and am miserable trying to follow the timeline of standards in ENY (not even really using their materials). The continuum they follow is SEVERELY flawed and makes it extremely difficult for children to actually understand what they are supposed to be learning!! ENY/ Eureka/etc. is trash at its worst. It is a miming program at best, “Copy me, children. Don’t think. Don’t try to understand. And don’t learn. Just do what I do even though it makes NO sense to you!” I’m done! They are welcome to fire me for doing what is right. I’m going back to pure, intelligent, research based, constructivist mathematics from the likes of Van De Walle, Burns, Richards,, Sousa, Fosnot, etc! No more crap for my precious ones! Thank you again Raschelle!! You don’t even know how important your light is in this dark and dreary land!!
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Stay the course Mathncraft! You are not alone. I am going to continue to speak up and out. The program is not for our youngest children… Fire is Catching! -Raz
I’m so frustrated with trying to teach this program. I agree with you! It’s awful! I couldn’t put it into words as well as you, so thanks for saying all you have said. It just makes me so sad.
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Thank you everyone for speaking up! I am in a school district 10 miles north of Spokane. We have committed ourselves into using Engage New York for 3 years, because it was the only “true, built from the ground up” curriculum out there. This is year 3 and I don’t care what the “reviews” or “data” say. THIS PROGRAM STINKS and it’s TERRIBLE FOR KIDS!!! The bottom line is, WE the PROFESSIONAL EDUCATORS know what is right for kids. WE teach them. WE assess them. WE KNOW them.I have taught for 21 years. My 2nd graders hate math and worse yet, they are so confused. My colleagues and I have muddled our way through this curriculum for 2 years. We can say that we have honestly tried it. (I had to, or I would of burned it right after I dropped kicked it across the living room 2 years ago).
I brought it home every night so I could highlight what I was supposed to say and hope that the kids said their lines too…I had sticky notes all over my lesson, trying to clarify for me at least, what the main concept was. Of course, when we finally got to the practice pages, the problems were usually about something else or muddled up with 3 different types of problems, many of which had nothing to do with the lesson. I resorted to watching “Eureka Math” youtube videos during my lunch break in hopes of finding out what what the lesson was supposed to be about. I purchased (with my own money) math lessons on Teachers Pay Teachers in an attempt to create developmentally appropriate, hands on activities. I woke up at 3 a.m. anxiously thinking about teaching Eureka math. I spent weekends at school making games to supplement Eureka.
Skip to year 3-this year. I was ready. I had a positive attitude. I knew this year would be a great math year. I had 2 years under my belt! Day 3, module 1-the crash-again. We jump from reviewing “ten buddies” to adding and subtracting from a double digit number, by decomposing the other numeral to make a ten, but not just 10, the next 10 on up to 100. Are you with me? I will not teach this wishy-washy, muddled up, all over the place math program to my kids any longer. I have had the same experiences as all of the other comments on this page. We have been limping along, trying to do the “right thing” and “teach ENY with fidelity”, all along knowing it is WRONG for kids. It’s not about whether we LIKE the program or not, it’s about WHAT IS BEST FOR KIDS!!! I just want to teach math well and I will. Thank you for speaking up everyone.
The good news is that we have not adopted Eureka Math, but we are in a math adoption year. Any suggestions? I also need more “data” to back up my “refusal” to use Eureka. Thank you so much! Katy
You are SPOT on Katy. It truly stinks and is BAD mathematics pedagogy. Stay far far away! The machine keeps buying into this “crap”. Our children are not guinea pigs. -Raz
I am a second grade ELL teacher and I agree that this program is atrocious for children. The Eureka worksheets were haphazardly made without any examples or adequate practice beforehand, the word problems are convoluted and unnecessarily wordy, the timing and pacing are both unrealistic.
Great article! Just posted on my Twitter @edtechwny
I am a parent, not a teacher but have been researching Engage NY recently as one of my children is now having issues in math. My children go to a SMALL elementary school, and I mean small, 60 kids total in the school. While I have had concerns about the programs that their school has been teaching for awhile now, neither have had much issue with mastering the work. Until now. My 3rd grader was introduced to sprints on the heels of a ‘new’ way of solving ‘difficult’ multiplication. Since she did not fully grasp the deconstruction of the multiplication equation (sorry I guess that is multiplication sentence now?) it sent her into a tailspin.
Now in our family math is a part of everyday life. I used to be an Engineer and am now a financial analyst, my husband a carpenter and machinist. Math is always around us and my kids actually enjoy getting thrown problems at the dinner table. Neither of my children have ever had an inkling of issue with math, they just get it. So I guess I am ahead of the game there right? Well not anymore, one day my daughter came home in a completely nasty temper, once I finally got it out of her that her absolutely FOUL mood was due to the fact that she now thinks she is stupid because “everybody but her understands this even the kids that go for extra help”, but she does not. She wants to drop out of school and never see her friends again because they make fun of her.
I had her write down a problem like the ones that she was having issues with at school and she tried to explain what she was supposed to do. 5 X 9. She knew the answer right away but she said I cannot give the answer I have to deconstruct it. So this is when I pulled in backup, my son who is a grade ahead of her he explained this is the answer: 5X9 = 5X5+5X2+5X2. (there was a step in between but my guess is you know about that) We practiced and she gets it now but is frustrated that it is so complicated. The thing that really gets me is that her confidence is shot. Instead of doing her homework with me there but not relying on me like she used to, she looks at me every time she writes an answer down, just checking to see if I am going to say – maybe you need to look at that again.
I met with her teacher, and while she understood my concerns and she has provided me with the Engage NY website so I can ‘go through’ the program with my daughter to provide support where it might be needed. I did not go back and forth with her on the merits of the program although she did try to take me there. My response is/was, “a parent is an integral part of their children’s education, it is not teachers alone – particularly at this age” (In fact the parents were all asked to sign a “commitment” letter stating that they would be supportive of their children in helping with homework and asking about the school day. I must say was one of the most insulting documents I have ever seen and it went into the circular file!) “If I cannot support her when she runs into issues because I do not know the right terminology or methods. Then it does not matter if Albert Einstein himself wrote the program, it cannot be the best or even all that good because I cannot be supportive when they are stumbling or back off but be available when then need to push through it.”
I do not have an issue with the teacher, really it seems like she is being supportive and, I get the whole turd analogy thing but it is small consolation. I have seriously considered home schooling because I believe the education will be better than what is being taught today in the schools. Again not a did on teachers but rather the programs, in my children’s school there are mostly good teachers but they are still putting lipstick on a pig. The two things that have held me back are social and acceptance to a good college. So, while I apologize for being long winded in this post, can any of you teachers provide me with your honest opinion. At this point with both of my children test scores are in the top 5% of my state for ELA and Math, keep them in or homeschool. My state has no requirement that homeschoolers test to common core or otherwise.
Thank you for sharing! This is similar to so many other family stories. It breaks my heart. ~Raz
I would not worry about the college angle! Do what’s best for your children so they flourish and follow their passions… my son is opted out of all state tests and most online tests schools are now doing. He will be fine… so will your children!
Thank you for your support! I really am leaning to homeschooling next year and it makes me so sad in a way. I had so much fun at school! I want that for my kids. Friendships are forged there, you do so many stupid dumb things with them that become part of you. You find that teacher that just ‘gets’ you and believes in you.
As an update my son came home from school with a NAEP testing letter signed by the principal. The letter stated that his (my son’s) responses, including those that are for “background” would be anonymous, then later it stated that they would be confidential. Now, I am not an idiot and those two words are not the same, in fact they cannot exist at the same time for the same thing. I really would have been fine with it, except for the fact that it leads me to either 1) The principal is an idiot (doubt that) or 2) somebody is trying to mislead me about something. What? no idea. Why? got me there too. Anyway it gave me a creepy feeling about the whole thing so I elected to exclude him from the testing.
I love hearing from both sides of the fence about Engage NY/Eureka. Our school is at a crossroads to adopt new resources and I am struggling to find a better option. Any help would be appreciated. We follow Common Core standards
Are there any other schools besides Louisiana’s that dumped Eureka? I live in Nebraska, where we are not mandated to do Common Core, and my son’s little farm district school replaced Saxton with this nonsensical “math.” My spouse says the only way I’m going to get the board to hear me is to bring examples of districts/schools who dropped the program.
I know several are deciding not to use it. I have not done the current research on who and what districts. I do know my district is dumping it and have a new program K-2 next year with 3 – 5 following the next year. This year the 3 – 6 graders will still have to be using EngageNY which is a shame. My own son will be subject to it.
I LOVE this curriculum and my school has really seen growth since it was implemented three years ago.
I am glad it is working for your school. For the majority of children it does NOT work.
I also believe the teachers who do “like” it enjoy doing a frontal mini lesson and have nice worksheets the children can sit and regurgitate and “stay quiet”.
Any other kinder teachers out there? This has been my first year at a new district that just adopted Eureka so it is new to everyone. What I can’t get over is that there was no pilot program where they tested out Eureka and maybe 1 or 2 other curriculums, they (admin and coaches) just went ahead, drank the punch, and this ridiculous program to use in our 3 elementary school. Being the only teacher in my grade level that was new, I had just come from a school using a different curriculum that was great, thorough, aligned will with both CC and MN state standards, so I knew they had better options. Also my now current school has a very high Somali population (and again, we are kindergarten) so the terms, vocab, and necessary prior experience and exposure is just putting another obstacle in front of these kids. It’s been such a relief to read this blog. No one at my school seems to recognize this. I feel like our admin and coaches were brainwashed into a cult during their “training” in new york and now are blinding following the leader to mathematics hell.
My other big issue with this curriculum at the kinder lever is the insane about of materials they are expected to use. These kids are 5! They should not be trying to do 4 different transitions in a lesson and working with 20 different manipulatives (all of which I have to prepare for them into plastic baggies. It’s the beginning of December, I am out of baggies and usually clock over an hour a day prepping math materials.