Professor B Power Learning Mathematics for Children is different from other math curricula. Why?
- Professor B Math is NOT based on rote memorization of facts and formulas.
- Professor B Math is not broken down into fragmented skills.
- Professor B Math is not tied to grade levels
- Professor B Math does not require the teacher to be an experienced math teacher to use the program.
Then how does it work?
Professor Barrett was a man before his time. Before the science of Mind, Brain and Education science was a discipline in the universities, he understood that our brains are wired to seek meaningful connections and to look for patterns. He understood child development and learning theory which uses metacognition and oral language to create new learning. This means that the students talk about HOW they process their tasks and understand that math tells a connected story.
When I was a struggling home school parent, I felt a lack of confidence in my ability to explain math skills to my six children. I depended on the textbook explanations to teach each new skill. If my student didn't get it from that particular presentation, I could read through it again, and try to put it into my own words. If that didn't work, I was stuck.
Once I discovered Professor Barrett's program, I still read the lesson to my student. Instead of reading 'step one- do this, step two - do this...', I read questions from the book to my child and I learned how to lead them into discovering for themselves the math concepts. The students are taught that each new concept grows out of the previous one. The students understand each new concept as it relates to all of those which have come before it.
Because addition and subtraction are related concepts, they are taught together in Book One. In traditional programs, addition is taught for weeks or months before subtraction is introduced. New concepts in Professor B are introduced more efficiently and thus, one short book covers three years of grade levels. This program is different because it is accelerated. A student will go through each book in about 10 months, covering about 3 school years of math. As a result, depending on your own pace, a student will achieve pre-Algebra content in about fifth or sixth grade.
Professor B's alternative presentation builds math fluency and calculation skills like no other program I have ever seen. Students do not depend on rote memory to recall their facts, but they use mental strategies which use fully-fledged number sense and math concepts. For example, a student in Professor B Math knows that 6 x 4 can be calculated by adding four sixes, or two twelves, or six fours, or five sixes-subtract one six, or six fives - subtract one four, and so on.
Professor B Math is often used as a supplement to other math programs. It is like adding reinforcement bar to the concrete foundation while building the rooms on the building. The student retains long term memory of how and why math works because of the meaningful brain connections that this program creates.
There is more to talk about as far as why Professor B Math works like it does. As an educational therapist, I want to share about visual-spatial cognitive functions and the role of language in learning theory. Maybe next time...