**“What is Math in Practice?”** We get that a lot. It might be more important to first talk about

*why*

*Math in Practice*.

Sometimes we look back to the “good old days” of teaching math with rose-colored glasses. But did everyone learn and love mathematics in those classrooms? What do you remember about math class when you were the student? What was a typical assignment? What did your classroom look like and sound like? As I listen to teachers across the country, I am struck by the similarity of their experiences as they recall:

- lots of memorizing
- long worksheets
- silent practice
- a teacher telling how to do it
- one right answer
- one way to get the answer
- no group work
- no manipulatives.

We know that one of the biggest changes in the teaching of math is a new definition of proficiency. Computation skills are still important, but it takes more than that. We want our students to understand why math works.