Denver Teacher Leadership Summit

Game Based Mathematics in a Rural Setting: a summer community partnership for elementary students grades 2-5

With school budgets tight, many school districts have cut summer school remediation and enrichment programs completely from the educational landscape. In Mesa County, Colorado, we have experienced massive budget shortfalls during the past five years. During this time, Mesa County Valley School District #51 lost its summer school programming. Many students in the rural communities of Mesa County no longer had access to learning during the summer months. With a partnership between the City of Fruita, Fruita business leaders, and three elementary school teachers, mathematics instruction and enrichment were offered to any student in grades 2 through 5 for free. This was a free program where students could attend a one hour "Math Camp" session twice a week for four weeks. During the summer of 2014, two sessions of Fruita Math Camp were offered, and over 80 students from four rural schools attended one or both sessions offered at the Fruita Civic Center (thanks to the generous space donation from the City of Fruita). Teachers wanted to ensure that the mathematics learning was engaging and non-threatening for the elementary students, so the teachers offered math games that would support problem solving and computational fluency when students went back to school in August. Through Math Camp, teachers, volunteers, and community members came together to facilitate the learning of students from this rural area.

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Idea No. 193