Few educational systems or programs truly articulate from year to year, vertically building conceptual knowledge and language facility. And Concept Construxions connects horizontally as well, helping students make interdisciplinary connections. This "silent teacher" follows students from room to room, offering visual cues that coordinate ideas.
Here are other important reasons to use Concept Construxions:
Facility With Symbols and Language Improves Math Test Scores
Robyn Steinhilber of St. John Fisher College compiled some intriguing research. Here is a short excerpt:
“Today’s standardized tests require students to “read, create, use, and comprehend numerous mathematical representations as a way of demonstrating mathematical literacy” (Matteson, 2006, p.205). According to Rutherford-Becker & Vanderwood (2009), students’ mathematical performance is influenced by both computational skills and reading comprehension. Students need to be able to manipulate symbols (understand objects and relationships) just as much as they need problem representation skills, or the ability to translate between verbal and graphical representations (Matteson, 2006; Adams, 2010). These problem representation skills, or language skills, are what are holding students back the most (Matteson, 2006; Rutherford-Becker & Vanderwood, 2009).”
See References here.
Adams, A. (2010). Rehearsal or Reorganization: Two patterns of literacy strategy use in secondary mathematics classes. The Montana Mathematics Enthusiast, 7(2&3), 371-390.
Matteson, S. (2006). Mathematical Literacy and Standardized Mathematical Assessment. Reading Psychology, 27, 205-233.
Rutherford-Becker, K., & Vanderwood, M. (2009). Evaluation of the Relationship Between Literacy and Mathematical Skills as Assessed by Curriculum-Based Measures. The California School Psychologist, 14, 23-34.
Thompson, D. (2007). Communication and Representation as Elements in Mathematical Literacy. Reading and Writing Quarterly, 23, 179-196.
Active Engagement = Motivation + Conceptual Knowledge + Social Interaction
The National Center for Research on Teacher Learning at Michigan State University comments on the call for active engagement in classrooms, where:
“…students to learn how to pose questions, construct their own interpretations and ideas, and clarify and elaborate upon the ideas of others. Such skills empower students to acquire a level of understanding that provides them with the flexibility to respond to new situations and serves as the foundation for a lifetime of further learning.” – How Teachers Learn to Engage Students in Active Learning
The IB Requires a Concept-Based Approach
Schools utilizing the IB programmes (PYP, MYP or DP) know about the concept-based approach to curriculum that the IB promotes. Concept Construxions is the perfect system for building students toward those Key and Related Concepts that guide learning.
English Language Learners Benefit From Persistent Structures
If you utilize the WIDA Standards you are aware of multiple levels of ELL. ELL expert Kate Kinsella states that “Students need clear instructional routines,” which is also true for mainstream students. Claude Goldenberg of Stanford University reminds us that ELL remain at this status for several years, indicating that a persistent program with ongoing structures can support this population: “ELD instruction should continue at least until students reach level 4 (early advanced) and possibly level 5 (advanced).” Kinsella also connects to active engagement and academic discourse: “The goal is not just to get [ELLs] to understand a word, it’s getting them to flex their little language muscles, and to do it accurately.” See our More Info Page to download information about Concept Construxions and ELL.
The Universal Design for Learning Requires Educators to “Provide Multiple Means”
The Universal Design for Learning is a framework utilized by many schools to guide curriculum and learning environment design. Their Guidelines suggest the provision of Multiple Means of Representation, Multiple Means of Action and Expression and Multiple Means of Engagement. The design of Concept Construxions supports all three! See our More Info Page to download a complete alignment.