Big Ideas Learning Leadership Conference & Recap

Two weeks ago, Big Ideas Learning met with administrators in Michigan for the Big Ideas Math Symposium. Teachers and Administrators had the opportunity to meet and talk with authors Dr. Ron Larson and Dr. Laurie Boswell as well as meet and talk with Denise McDowell, Barb Webber and users of the Big Ideas Math program.

Recently, Cherie Maher, a math teacher from the Troy School District shared with us her wonderful story and picture:

“I enjoyed and appreciated everything I learned today at the Big Ideas Conference.  Thanks for your hard work to help us implement this new book.

“I wanted to share a funny story… Tonight, I showed my new Big Ideas T-shirt to my boys that are in 3rd grade and 10th grade.  Immediately, they both shouted out their answers to how many 1/2’s are in 1/4.  The 10th grader shouted out ‘2’ and the 3rd grader shouted out ‘that’s easy, 1/2!’  My 10th grader gave a condescending smile, and my 3rd grader gave a sheepish grin.  It was great to see their reactions when they found out that the younger brother was right!”

 “I have another son in 8th grade who was not around at the time, but later I asked him.  His response was ‘2, no 8!!!’ “

                                                          (Cherie Maher with her sons)

Thanks for the great story and even better picture, Cherie! Do you have a story about the Big Ideas Math program? Let us know in the comments below!

Recap of 69th Annual ASCD Conference & Exhibit In Los Angeles, California

We had a fabulous time exhibiting Big Ideas Math at the ASCD 69th Annual Conference & Exhibit Show in Los Angeles, California on March 15th.  We would like to thank all of you that visited our booth, shared your stories and brightened our days with your Big Ideas Math stories and experiences.

This year we offered a sneak peek of our NEW High School Series (Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2) making its official debut at NCTM in April. We received a lot of interest and excitement for the series. In case you were unable to attend the conference, here are some pictures from the conference!

We hope to see you at the 2014 NCTM Annual Meeting & Exposition in New Orleans. Look for our booth, booth number 1718.

If you would like more information about the NEW High School Series, please contact us!

Big Ideas Math 3-Tier RTI Model

Response to Intervention (RTI), a framework for modifying instruction based on early evaluation of student-learning needs, is gaining traction in schools. The Big Ideas Math program completely supports the 3-tier model. Using research-based instructional strategies, Big Ideas Math helps teachers reach, challenge, and motivate each student utilizing the three tiers. Opportunities for daily assessment help identify areas of needs and easy-to-use resources are provided to support the education of all students. Following Big Ideas Math’s 3-Tier RTI, you will be able to set your students up for success in the classroom.

Big Ideas Math and 3-Tier RTI:

Tier 1: Daily Intervention

The Big Ideas Math program uses research-based instructional strategies to ensure quality instruction. Vocabulary support, cooperative learning opportunities, and graphic organizers are included in the Pupil Edition, with additional strategies throughout the program. Daily student reviews and assessment guarantee that every student is making regular progress. Complete support helps teachers personalize instruction for every student.

Tier 2: Strategic Intervention

The Big Ideas Math program facilitates increased time and focus on instruction for students who are not responding effectively to Tier 1 intervention. The program’s ancillary materials include additional support to assist teachers with the needs of these struggling learners. Such examples include Fair Game Reviews, Graphic Organizers, Study Tips, and Real-Life Applications. These supplements help to enhance learning and engage the diverse students within today’s math classrooms. Additionally, using the classroom and online resources provided, teachers can reach, challenge and motive each student with instruction targeted to their individual needs.

Using the classroom and online resources provided, teachers can reach, challenge, and motivate each student with germane, high-quality instruction targeted to their individual needs.


Tier 3: Customized Learning Intervention

In Tier 3, support for students working below grade level is also available by employing the intensive intervention lessons and activities offered in the Big Ideas Math series. The Differentiating the Lesson guide provides teachers with both an overview of each chapter’s lessons and detailed notes on lesson preparation and lesson procedures, including instruction and demonstration suggestions and worksheets. The Big Ideas Math Skills Review Handbook provides complete coverage of pre-course skills including Key Concepts, Vocabulary, Visual Models and Practice Makes Perfect. The Teaching Edition contains complete Differentiated Instruction Notes, written by Master Teacher Laurie Boswell, and includes ideas on introducing and motivating the lesson as well as comprehensive notes on activities and examples.


Big Ideas Learning: Social Media Recap – February


Another edition of this month’s best links is coming your way. Find out why we love math, explore a few new websites, and learn how scaffolding is embedded into Big Ideas Math in this month’s Social Media Recap:


  1. Guest Blog – Barb Webber “Our Passion For Math – Share The Love!!!” “Am I a “math geek”???  You bet I am!  And proud to share my passion – share my love of mathematics.  And I’m hoping that love will grow among others, impacting their attitudes and effort.”
  2. Scaffolding– “Scaffolding, sometimes referred to as guided practice, is a learning process that promotes a deeper level of understanding for students by providing learning support when a new skill or concept is introduced.”



NEW Board! “Teacher Trends”, everything teacher. Content generated by hundreds of real teachers. If you are interested in becoming a pinner please email with your pinterest email and a link to your Pinterest boards and you will be added. Please pin teacher related content. No spam.No inappropriate pins. Thanks!


  1. 5 Tips to Help Teachers Who Struggle With Technology
  2. What Students Remember Most About Teachers
  3. Making Math Fun
  4. 23 Defining Traits Of Your Favorite Teacher – BuzzFeed!
  5. New Approaches to Teaching Fractions
  6. Strict Math Teacher’s Secret Identity..As A Baby Cuddler

What was your favorite thing about this month’s Social Media Recap? Let us know in the comments below!


Guest Blog – Barb Webber “Our Passion For Math – Share The Love!!!”

With the week coming to a close and today being Valentine’s Day, we are proud to feature another guest blog from one of our consultants, Barb Webber. This week, Barb talks about the love and passion for mathematics.

Almost daily our students challenge us to give them answers about “when are we ever going to use this stuff?”  Even with our dedication to developing Mathematical Practice #4:  Model with Mathematics, we sometimes have to work hard to provide examples of application to problems arising in everyday life, society and the workplace.  However, I propose a simple solution – share your passion, share your love of mathematics!  This goes far beyond sale prices, travel scenarios, bridge construction and wonders of technology.  How does mathematics affect you?  What impact does it make on you and who you are?

When did you first feel a connection with numbers?  What patterns help you to make sense of problems or give you that edge to “do the math” in your head?  Do your students see that spark in your eyes?  Do you invite a challenge and encourage them to find their path to success even though it may be different than yours?   How about during math department meetings?  Do you share instructional strategies and student successes with other teachers?  Do you discuss the activities you’ve incorporated to develop the Mathematical Practices?  Share your passion.  Model with LOVE of Mathematics.

Have you ever read math books to your students?  The Math Curse is my favorite and provides creative, clever and challenging connections to communication arts – see what a little math can do to promote reading and writing opportunities.

Do others get your mathematical sense of humor?  Did you realize April 1st will be a palindrome?  Do you tell math jokes?…the little acorn that grew up and said, “Geometry!”  A colleague of mine put a math quote on the board each week.  Fresh material is an online search away! 

Am I a “math geek”???  You bet I am!  And proud to share my passion – share my love of mathematics.  And I’m hoping that love will grow among others, impacting their attitudes and effort.  A comfort level and positive attitude leads to confidence.  Confidence leads to perseverance, willingness to investigate and develop new and different strategies and the understanding that we learn from our mistakes as well as our successes.  Share your passion.  Yes, I’m a “math person” …and I love it!

From all of us at Big Ideas, have a wonderful weekend and a happy Valentines Day!