News from Mathnasium of Winnetka
The “COVID Slide” Will Leave Children Up to a Year Behind in Math. Mathnasium@home Can Help.
May 11, 2020
In the spring, we traditionally encourage parents to take measures to prevent against the summer slide, in which children lose 2-3 months of the previous year’s math learning during the long summer break.
But this is hardly a traditional year.
Before the summer of 2020 even begins, more than 50 million U.S. families are already facing what educators are calling the “COVID slide” — the learning loss that will result from students being shut out of school for an extended period of time during the pandemic.
The Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA), a nonprofit assessment provider, predicts school closures will cause some students to be as much as a year behind in math when school restarts in the fall, with elementary school students at the greatest risk.
As the end of the academic year approaches, some schools are still struggling to fully transition their students to remote learning. Even in situations where schools have been able to shift quickly, the student experience is not the same as traditional classroom learning due to technology challenges. Not all school offer “synchronous” instruction, which allows students to engage with educators in real time.
Math Comprehension Will Suffer Most
Under COVID-19 lockdowns, student learning is being impacted in all academic subjects, but math is hit hardest. Many children have gaps in their math foundation during the best of times. While parents may try to help, the vast majority feel poorly equipped or too time consumed to help their child with their math studies.
The resulting frustration that families experience now is more than a short-term problem; it’s a setback with long-term consequences for millions of students. Examining NWEA’s research, the New York Times called the COVID slide “catastrophic.”
Mathnasium@home: Live, Face-to-Face Instruction
The most effective way to remediate these learning gaps is with real-time, face-to-face instruction. Mathnasium designed its new Mathnasium@home service to do exactly that: provide the same expert math instruction and Mathnasium Method™ as in its learning centers, through any computer. Mathnasium@home learning offers flexibility with a student’s schedule and is available anywhere, regardless of distance from a physical Mathnasium center.
Mathnasium@home provides a comprehensive assessment to pinpoint strengths and weaknesses in a student’s math skills, then develops a learning plan unique to that student. Working with that plan, highly trained instructors tutor students in a way that is supportive and perfectly paced, so students enjoy learning math.
The sooner gaps in math knowledge are addressed, the less time it takes to remedy them. That’s why it’s important that children get live, synchronous instruction to support their virtual classroom learning as soon as possible.
We also recommend using Mathnasium@home this summer, so students can continue to make up lost ground, avoid the learning loss that typically comes with summer break, or get ahead for the next academic year. When local Mathnasium learning centers reopen their doors, students can continue with Mathnasium@home or easily transition to the center for the in-person experience. Either way, students will get exactly what they need to prevent further learning loss, reverse the COVID slide, and stay strong in math.