Frequently Asked Questions
What is Fun Factor?
Fun Factor is Bedtime Math's hands-on math offering for the K-5 classroom tailor-made for the demands of pandemic education. It features engaging, dynamic activities for students to use either in the classroom or at home, paired with live online teacher training. Fun Factor was developed in consultation with Columbia Teachers College. Many of the activities are modeled after our popular Crazy 8s after-school club, which has been proven to reduce math anxiety for elementary school-age kids.
Who can participate?
For the current 2020-21 school year, we are happy to make this program available free of charge to K-5 teachers and students in the US. Teachers must be currently employed at a public elementary or accredited private school and provide direct instruction to students.
What does Fun Factor cost?
As our charitable donation to support teachers and students during the pandemic, Bedtime Math is happy to offer Fun Factor free of charge for the 2020-21 school year. This includes free live online training and a classroom kit of materials shipped at no cost to you.
What kinds of math activities do you offer?
We offer a variety of hands-on, standards-based activities for grades K-5. All activities address key concepts that are developmentally appropriate for each grade and align with standards that enrich any math curriculum. We zero in on mathematical operations and concepts that many kids struggle with including multiplication, division and fractions.
Why is a hands-on approach to math important?
Experiencing math through play activates parts of the brain that enable students to solidify math concepts that they don’t always understand simply by doing worksheets. We start with the fun and roll in the math to help kids deepen their understanding and appreciation for math. This reduces anxiety and encourages life-long math exploration.
Will this count towards my professional development requirement?
It depends on your school district. We are more than happy to provide documentation of your attendance at any of our trainings.
How many professional development sessions do you plan to host, and when will they be offered?
We will be offering sessions throughout the 2020-21 school year. We are attempting to offer sessions at various times of day to accommodate people’s schedules. To view a complete list of sessions, check out our schedule.
How long is each professional development session?
Each session is 1 hour. We briefly outline our key goals and give an overview of the standards covered and the research behind each activity. We then walk through the lesson step by step.
Do I need to register for each session separately?
Yes, you do! Each session is tailored to one or more activity and grade level.
What if none of the sessions fit my schedule?
It is important to us that all teachers participate in a training session before receiving their materials. We’ve done our best to schedule sessions for different grades at various times of day. If nothing fits your schedule, email us at email@example.com. We will do our best to accommodate you!
Can I attend a session for more than one grade level?
You may, but we’ve got you covered so you don’t need to! We encourage you to attend the session for the grade level you teach, because the teacher guide will also include “on-ramps” with below-grade-level practice for struggling students and “accelerators” at higher grade levels for kids ready for more challenge. This helps you meet the needs of all your students wherever they are.
If I am unable to attend a session I have registered for, will a video recording of the session be made available?
Currently we are not recording our sessions. Our online professional development is designed to encourage open discussion among participants, similar to attending an in-person workshop. If you miss a session, we encourage you to check our schedule and re-register. We do vary the session times so we hope there’s one that will fit your schedule!
Do I need to participate in each session to receive the classroom materials for that activity?
As part of our charitable gift, we do require teachers to participate in the professional development session associated with each activity so they can gain a deeper understanding of the mechanics and the pedagogy behind it. We have found that bringing like-minded teachers together to connect with one another creates deeper conversations and generates ideas on how to make math fun.
What materials are included in the classroom kit?
Every kit includes a detailed Teacher Guide and Live Lesson slides in an editable PowerPoint deck that you can use in your classroom or during live remote instruction. Student materials vary depending on the activity. For most activities, we will mail you a kit of physical materials, which may include items such as wax sticks, glow sticks, and color handouts on paper or cardstock.
How long are the lessons expected to take with a class?
Instruction time for each lesson should take no more than 30 minutes, but they can be revisited in small groups or independently whether students are together or at home.
How do I get a classroom kit?
In order to receive a classroom kit, first attend a professional development session. Following the session, you can place your request for digital and physical materials on our orders page. Once your request has been reviewed and approved, we will send you an email with a link to our Fun Factor Teachers’ Lounge on Dropbox, where you’ll find a detailed Teacher Guide as well as Live Lesson slides to use during instruction. Tracking information for the physical materials we provide will be included in a separate email once your order has shipped.
How long after my request is approved will I receive my materials?
After your request is placed and approved, you can expect your materials to arrive within 3-4 weeks barring any shipping delays.
Do I need to pay for shipping?
Bedtime Math will cover the cost of shipping for the 2020-21 school year. We ship classroom kits to all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S Virgin Islands. We will ship internationally to any US military base that receives mail via the USPS military pouch. Materials will not be shipped to Post Office boxes.
How will I distribute the materials to my students?
Whether you’re in school together or you’re teaching remotely, we will send you a kit of materials for you to repackage individually for your students. Many teachers have told us they plan to create grab-and-go bags for their students to pick up at school, prior to teaching the lesson.
I am a math coach and I supervise math teachers who teach multiple grade levels. Can I receive materials for all grade levels?
Fun Factor professional development sessions are designed for classroom teachers to spend an hour with us and get a deeper understanding of the ideas behind the activities and how they are intended to be taught. While we encourage math coaches and supervisors to register for our sessions to learn about Fun Factor and spread the word, we will only provide materials to classroom teachers who provide direct instruction to students and participate in our sessions.
I am a math support teacher and teach students in multiple grades. Can I receive materials for all of my students?
Fun Factor materials are packed in our warehouse in quantities designed to supply most K-5 classes. If you are a math support teacher, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will do our best to accommodate you with the materials you need.
I coach a Crazy 8s afterschool club. How are Fun Factor activities different from Crazy 8s?
While you may recognize some games from Crazy 8s, all Fun Factor activities are designed for use during the school day in a classroom of up to 30 students, and are tailored to meet specific grade-level standards.