The Family Math Roadmap Coordinating Committee (leadership group) is seeking an organization to lead the Family Math Roadmap Project, providing support and coordination for current (outlined below) and future strategies focused on building a Family Math movement. The vision for this movement is:
- Integration of Family Math into early childhood education (note that while we are inclusive of children ages 0–8, the emphasis for this work is children ages 3–6)
- Parents and families build understanding of the importance of Family Math to support their child’s success
- Parents and families implement evidence-based practices proven to reduce parent/family and child math anxiety and increase math self-concept
The Family Math Roadmap Project is an initiative of families, researchers, practitioners, advocates and philanthropy intended to close opportunity and achievement gaps by promoting “family math.” Family Math refers to activities that happen within the context of family relationships, the community, and everyday life that support young children and families to strengthen their math awareness, understanding and confidence. The project recognizes the power of families as catalysts of their children’s learning and aims to work with families to design supports that build on what families are already doing to promote early math learning.
Over the last three years the Overdeck Family Foundation, Heising-Simons Foundation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Robert R. McCormick Foundation and Chicago Mercantile Exchange Group Foundation have collaborated to create a national agenda for Family Math in partnership with a diverse Coordinating Committee representing 10 different organizations (listed below). This work generated the Roadmap for Supporting a Family Math Movement, a three-year plan that outlines efforts for the activities required to launch a national campaign. The Coordinating Committee shares a commitment to engage families systematically and meaningfully, both building on what families are already doing and addressing cultural and structural barriers that prevent them from doing more. The movement has five strategies:
- Research. Family Math is a nascent field without clearly defined best practices. It is necessary to develop a clear, culturally responsive research agenda that allows us to determine which components of Family Math work for whom and why. We also need better, culturally-informed ways to measure outcomes including family engagement, attitudes toward math and math learning outcomes.
- Practice. In order to implement Family Math equitably and effectively, there must be strong tools and supports to use in homes and the community. This means building awareness for the integration of family math practices into a diverse range of professions working with families of young children. And creating a network of practitioners to work with families, researchers and policy experts to develop resources that are relevant to—and in service of—all families’ math support needs.
- Policy. Broad implementation of Family Math requires supporting policy structures, including increased financial investment and intentional integration of Family Math with other early learning efforts. To support this, we need to build diverse stakeholder leadership, with an emphasis on parent/family leadership at local and national levels to advocate for Family Math.
- Advocacy. We need to build awareness and support for Family Math by using families and teachers as spokespeople. We hope to tap into existing programs and campaigns to accelerate this process.
- Philanthropy. The philanthropic community will play a crucial role in helping to ensure that these efforts have the resources to be successful and sustainable, including identifying/supporting a lead organization, to keep the Family Math field organized is a critical component to this work.
Please send questions related to this RFI process to FamilyMath@education-first.com.
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