Here, we address our most frequently asked questions.
What is Fun Factor?
Fun Factor is Bedtime Math Foundation’s groundbreaking math offering designed to complement any K-5 curriculum. Fun Factor brings math to life with visual, tactile activities designed to introduce students to new math concepts and to solidify their understanding of the fundamentals. By emphasizing the tangible before moving to the abstract, Fun Factor can help accelerate learning.
Developed in consultation with Columbia Teachers College, Fun Factor gives kids the thrill of victory as they master important concepts. Our professional development training shows teachers how to re-imagine math class and re-ignite kids’ love of learning.
Who may participate?
Any US public elementary or accredited private school serving grades K-5 may bring Fun Factor to its school community. Our professional development specialists will train all educators in the school who provide direct math instruction: teachers, math coaches, supervisors, etc. Our training is not intended for individual teachers or very small groups.
What does Fun Factor cost?
Bedtime Math Foundation subsidizes the majority of the cost of Fun Factor as part of our nonprofit mission. Our fee is based on the total number of math teachers in a school, and will not exceed $50 per teacher in a school year. This fee includes professional development and all digital teacher guides and physical student materials that accompany our hands-on activities.
What kinds of math activities do your PD sessions demonstrate?
Fun Factor professional development sessions feature a variety of dynamic, standards-based activities for grades K-5. All activities address key grade-specific concepts, yet are designed to serve all students in the class, with variations that incorporate above- and below-grade level skills. We zero in on mathematical operations and concepts that many kids struggle with including place value, multiplication, division, fractions and fluency with factors.
Why is a hands-on approach to math important?
Experiencing math through play activates regions of the brain that enable students to solidify math concepts that they don’t always grasp from worksheets. It also deepens their understanding and appreciation for math. It has been shown that math anxiety impedes learning. Hands-on play can reduce math anxiety, empowering students to achieve.
How many PD sessions does Fun Factor involve?
We strongly recommend at least six hours of PD for a given grade band (K-2 and 3-5), but can adjust this number based on key skills your school wants to prioritize. We work with principals and curriculum supervisors to select content targeting their teachers’ and students’ needs, and can offer guidance on how to incorporate our activities into any math curriculum.
Do you offer in-person or virtual PD?
For those schools in our home state of New Jersey, we will offer professional development sessions either in-person or virtually. For those schools outside of the New Jersey area, we will continue to offer our sessions virtually on Zoom for the 2021-22 school year.
What classroom materials do you provide?
For each PD session they attend, teachers will receive high-quality hands-on materials for every student in the class. In addition, they will receive detailed digital resources, including Teacher Guides and editable “Classtime Slides” to use during instruction. Hands-on student materials vary from activity to activity, but may include items such as wax sticks, glowsticks, and colorful gameboards and handouts printed on paper or cardstock.
How many days of instruction does a Fun Factor activity cover?
Each Fun Factor activity explores one or more skills in progressively more challenging layers, enabling teachers to give students as much or as little time as they need to master each concept. Lessons can be covered over a few days or spread out over weeks, and can even be tailored to small groups with different timelines. Materials also can be brought home to continue the learning.
How does the school request classroom materials?
Teachers who attend a given PD session are eligible to receive the physical materials and instructions for the activities covered. Following the session, Bedtime Math Foundation will work with a designated school liaison to coordinate fulfillment and shipment of materials from our warehouse. Schools can order at any time up to the end of the school-year contract.
How long will it take for a school to receive materials?
After a request is placed, schools can expect their hands-on classroom materials to arrive within 2-3 weeks, barring any shipping delays.
Is shipping included?
Yes, Bedtime Math will absorb the cost of shipping Fun Factor classroom materials to your school.
I coach a Crazy 8s after-school club. How is Fun Factor different from Crazy 8s?
Crazy 8s’ focus is purely recreational, while Fun Factor is an innovative new way to teach and learn math in the classroom.
Fun Factor’s hands-on activities are tightly aligned to grade-level standards and are designed to complement a wide range of elementary math curricula. The activities involve much more rigor than most Crazy 8s games, and are geared towards small-group differentiated instruction, in contrast to the larger club environment. This is why we provide in-depth PD to schools that implement Fun Factor. As a result, while you may recognize a couple of names from Crazy 8s, Fun Factor activities are a distinct offering.
If you don’t see your question here, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.