Frequently Asked Questions
What is Fun Factor?
Fun Factor is Bedtime Math Foundation's groundbreaking math offering for the K-5 classroom. It features engaging, hands-on activities that help students experience math in a whole new way, paired with live, online teacher training.
Developed in consultation with Columbia Teachers College, Fun Factor’s dynamic, social activities give kids the thrill of victory as they master important concepts. Math instruction doesn’t have to be tedious to be worthwhile. It’s time to re-imagine math class, and re-ignite kids’ love of learning.
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 in the US. Teachers must be currently employed at a public elementary or accredited private school and provide direct math instruction to elementary students.
What does Fun Factor cost?
As our charitable donation to support teachers and students during the pandemic, Bedtime Math Foundation is happy to offer Fun Factor free of charge for the 2020-21 school year. This includes free live online training and classroom materials shipped at no cost to you.
In fall 2021, we will begin charging a nominal fee for Fun Factor trainings, to help offset the costs to our Foundation. Teachers who complete Fun Factor professional development sessions will continue to receive free digital and physical classroom materials, at no additional cost. More detailed pricing information will be forthcoming this summer.
What kinds of math activities do your professional development sessions demonstrate?
Fun Factor professional development sessions feature a variety of dynamic, 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?
This spring, we’re running a special 6-week series of PD sessions for educators preparing to teach summer school to rising 1st – 5th grade students. Sessions will take place Wednesdays starting April 14 and Saturdays starting April 17. While we continue to offer our PD and materials at no cost, in return we now require teachers to share feedback on student progress after each activity. To learn more and to register, click here.
For the remainder of the 2020-21 school year, we will also continue to offer customized PD sessions and materials at no cost to schools or districts to target students’ specific skills and needs. For more information or to schedule a session, click here or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How is this summer professional development series any different than what you’ve been offering this school year?
While the format of each professional development session will look and feel very similar, sessions will be presented twice each week for 6 weeks, on Wednesdays and Saturdays beginning the week of April 12th. Sessions will be grouped by grade level: teachers of rising 1st-3rd graders and teachers of rising 4th-5th graders.
Do I have to agree to the Terms and Conditions in order to participate?
Yes, you do. In exchange for receiving free Fun Factor professional development and materials for summer school, we are now asking teachers to conduct brief warm-up and wrap-up exercises with students before and after each activity, and to let us know how students perform on these exercises. Data must be submitted online within three days of completing each activity, using a simple Google sheet we will provide. No individually identifiable student information will be collected.
Why are you asking for student performance data?
As a data-driven organization, we are continually looking to refine our activities and demonstrate impact. The warm-up and wrap-up exercises for each Fun Factor activity were designed as a low-stakes way to measure whether students have learned key math concepts. We’re asking summer school teachers to let us know how students perform on these exercises, and to share feedback about whether students enjoyed the activities. Your partnership will help us document and strengthen the effectiveness of hands-on math instruction.
What if I can’t make one or more sessions in a series? Can I still participate?
Yes, you can! When you register, you will receive an email confirmation with links to join all 6 sessions. But we will only provide the digital and physical materials to you for the sessions that you attend.
If my school or district hasn’t confirmed their plans for summer yet, can I still register for your summer professional development?
Yes, you can register and attend our professional development sessions for summer. We just ask that you do not request the required materials until your school or district has confirmed they will offer summer school. Keep in mind – we are now requiring teachers to provide student performance data as explained above in exchange for receiving Fun Factor professional development and materials for summer school at no cost.
I’ve lost my confirmation email for the summer series I registered for. What do I do?
Email us at email@example.com and we’ll resend you your confirmation email. The links to each session are unique to you and should not be shared with others.
What classroom materials do you provide?
Teachers who participate in Fun Factor professional development sessions receive detailed, digital Teacher Guides and editable “Live Lesson” PowerPoint decks to use in the classroom or during live remote instruction. Hands-on student materials vary depending on the activities demonstrated in the PD session, but may include items such as wax sticks, glowsticks, and color handouts on paper or cardstock.
How long are the Fun Factor activities expected to take with a class?
We estimate the instructional time for most activities to be approximately 30 minutes, but activities can be revisited in small groups or independently whether students are together or at home.
How do I request classroom materials?
First, register for and attend a Fun Factor professional development session or series, to learn about the research and pedagogy behind the activities being demonstrated. Following the session or series, 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 editable “Live Lesson” PowerPoint slides that you can download and use during instruction. Tracking information for the physical materials we provide will be included in a separate email once your order has shipped.
If I’ve already attended one or more professional development sessions, can I request materials for my summer school classroom without participating in the 6-week series?
If you’ve already attended one or more Fun Factor sessions this past school year and would like to request the materials to use in your classroom this summer, we’re happy to provide them at no cost as long as you agree to share feedback on student progress after each activity as outlined above. Ordering for digital and physical materials will open May 22, when the 6-week series is finished. If you require your materials ahead of that time, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note – we are offering a few new Fun Factor sessions as part of our 6-week series of PD sessions for summer school. To learn more and register, click here.
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 2-3 weeks, barring any shipping delays.
Should I request classroom materials after each session or wait until the 6-week series for summer is finished?
If you can wait to request the digital and physical materials until after May 22 when the 6-week series is finished, we would prefer to make one shipment to reduce the cost of shipping. If you require the materials ahead of that time, we will do our best to accommodate teacher requests.
Do I need to pay for shipping?
Bedtime Math Foundation 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 cannot be shipped to Post Office boxes.
How will I distribute the materials to my students?
Once you complete a Fun Factor PD session and your request for classroom materials has been approved, our warehouse will ship the physical materials to the school or home address you provide. Materials are usually packed or shrink-wrapped in packs of 4 or 10, and you may choose to repackage them individually. Many teachers with remote learners have told us they create grab-and-go bags for their students to pick up at school, prior to teaching the lesson.
I coach a Crazy 8s after-school club. How is Fun Factor different from Crazy 8s?
Fun Factor is a groundbreaking new way to teach and learn math in the classroom. It features hands-on activities which are demonstrated in live, online teacher training sessions, and includes the key materials you’ll need to lead your students through the lesson. While you may recognize a couple of names from Crazy 8s, Fun Factor activities are different. They are designed for use during the school day, and are tailored to teach specific grade-level math standards. Crazy 8s’ focus is purely recreational.