How to Use MPP

Flexible Use

The Math Pathways & Pitfalls program fits a variety of formal and informal learning situations:

  • a complement to the core curriculum during the regular school day
  • an intervention for after-school programs
  • a tool for tutoring sessions
  • a resource for intersession classes

Each Math Pathways & Pitfalls book is complete for use as an intervention (or prevention!). Download a Roadmap (PDF) for adapting Math Pathways & Pitfalls lessons for other settings.

Tips for Getting Started

Use the Resources that Come with each Book

  • Getting Started section
  • Teaching Guides for each lesson
  • DVD with Teacher Professional Development and FAQ’s
  • Guides for aligning lessons with the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Focal Points

Start Easy

Norma Sakamoto, a 37-year teaching veteran, suggests beginning with a Math Pathways & Pitfalls lesson on a topic that is familiar to students. They are more likely to contribute to their first discussion when the material is within their reach. Sakamoto also recommends reviewing the Discussion Builders (a full-sized poster included with each book) at the beginning of each lesson to raise the confidence level of students and allow a safe way of contributing to the discussions.

A Few Lessons Can Make a Difference

Susan Evans, a school administrator, comments that the power of Math Pathways & Pitfalls comes not only from the lessons, but also from their delivery. The strategies and questioning techniques transfer to the core curriculum, making learning fun and powerful. In fact, a classroom observation study found evidence that Math Pathways & Pitfalls practices do transfer to regular math lessons (Heller Research Associates, 2008). This may explain why only a few lessons (about 30 hours of instruction over 2 years) can impact standardized test scores.