Leadership Public Schools (LPS) teachers built Navigate Math to accelerate student development of foundational math skills, build agency, and change mindsets. Freshmen at LPS take Navigate Math in parallel with their core math course, usually Algebra 1. LPS teachers view math as the gatekeeper course to high school graduation and believe addressing this challenge to be an equity issue.
Navigate Math is flexible (can be edited however a teacher wants) and modular (can use just a few components) by design. The theory is that the course and approach need to be flexible and modular to meet not just the students but also their teachers wherever they happen to be in their practice and capacity. We think this personalized learning and teaching design approach increases the chance for successful implementation because it values incremental change as much as whole model change.
The course starts out very traditional on purpose so as to be familiar to students and teachers. The first few units see teachers support students building specific academic techniques and ownership skills (i.e. note-taking from teacher vs. text vs. video, self-monitoring, cooperative learning skills, etc.) that are essential for successful self-paced learning. Teachers shift to self-paced learning when they and their students are ready, slowly implementing additional course practices when ready.
LPS used some of its prototypes and its experience with Navigate Math to co-create the Learning Navigator with Gooru, a learning companion designed to support these practices, shown here in a study by the Learning Accelerator, and make Navigate Math available for copying and implementation.
For the past 4 years Navigate Math students have averaged 2.5+ years of growth compared with the national average on NWEA’s MAP test. This is with a variety of different teachers and experience levels, ranging from brand new to veteran. Students overwhelmingly report that the ability to move at their own pace and demonstrate mastery when they are ready are their favorite aspects of the course. Teachers report that the ability to evolve their practice and transition to asynchronous teaching and learning when they are ready is both responsive and empowering.