SOURCE: Math Solutions

October 28, 2009 08:00 ET

New Resource Meets Challenge of Teaching Mathematics to Our Nation's Growing Population of English Language Learners

Math Solutions' "Supporting English Language Learners in Math Class: A Multimedia Professional Learning Resource" Helps Schools Implement Effective Instructional Practices for Sustainable Results

SAUSALITO, CA--(Marketwire - October 28, 2009) - Although many of our nation's schools are equipped to teach the growing proportion of English language learners (ELLs) their ABCs, what about their 123s? A new multimedia professional learning resource from Math Solutions, "Supporting English Language Learners in Math Class: A Multimedia Professional Learning Resource," helps schools struggling to meet the challenge of simultaneously improving students' mastery of mathematics and advancing their academic language development.

Mainstream teachers are often forced into classroom situations without adequate training or preparation to meet the specific needs of ELLs. Although there are numerous books and resources regarding the needs of ELLs related to literacy, there is a glaring lack of resources for supporting these students in the development of mathematical skills and knowledge. Dedicated to advancing the learning of mathematics of all students, Math Solutions, the nation's leading provider of K-8 Mathematics professional development services, courses and products, created this resource to help schools implement effective instructional practices that create sustainable math results for English language learners.

More than 10% of our nation's public school students are English language learners and they are falling behind in Math*. According to the federally administered NAEP October 2009 report, students' scores in 4th grade mathematics have stagnated and racial gaps in test scores were unchanged.

"Although our schools have made great strides in preparing mainstream classroom teachers to teach English to non-native English speakers, most lack knowledge of effective strategies for teaching mathematical content," said Math Solutions CEO Christine Willig. "In order to provide equal access, teachers need to understand and address the unique needs of ELLs in learning math. The tools and strategies in this new resource support teachers in meeting this challenge."

"Supporting English Language Learners in Math Class" was developed for mainstream classrooms with one or more ELL students and includes three main components: a DVD of teachers and students in action, a two-book series for grades K-2 and 3-5, and a facilitator's guide to support wide-spread implementation of effective strategies. The opportunity to observe video of teachers and ELL students in the classroom along with the expert commentary provides an invaluable resource for all teachers with ELL students.

According to Rusty Bresser, supervisor of Teacher Education at the University of California, San Diego and Math Solutions author, "The challenge of teaching math to English language learners lies not only in making math lessons comprehensible to students but also ensuring that students have the language needed to understand instruction as well as express their grasp of math concepts. Therefore it is critical to provide instruction that includes both language and content objectives."

"Supporting English Language Learners in Math Class: A Multimedia Professional Learning Resource" by Rusty Bresser and co-authors Kathy Melanese and Christine Sphar can be purchased at or by calling 877.664.2230.

ISBN: 978-1-935099-07-9

Price: $299.00

* Sources: National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition, 2007.

About Math Solutions

Founded in 1984 by Marilyn Burns, a leader in teacher advocacy and one of today's preeminent math educators, Math Solutions is the foremost authority on transforming K-8 math instruction to ensure that all students achieve academic excellence. Math Solutions is dedicated to advancing the learning of mathematics by providing teachers with the highest quality professional development services, courses, and products and has served school districts in 48 states and Canada. For more information, please visit or phone 1-800-868-9092.

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