EASTON, PA—Already giddy with the anticipation of summer vacation, third graders from Team “Heat64PA” at Shawnee Elementary School found out they were in for a special visit—from none other than First In Math® Online Program creator Robert Sun. On June 10, excited students greeted Sun with posters welcoming him to their school, and performed a song they composed about First In Math.
Team “Heat64PA” shows off their First In Math® Online Program trophy. Back row, left to right: FIM Team Leader Denise Laudenslager; Math Coach Shawn Collier; Principal Josephine Galloway; Suntex President Robert Sun and District Math Coordinator Greg Hess.
During the year, third-grade teacher and FIM Team Leader Denise Laudenslager incorporated the program into the life of her class by encouraging students to write a special song. According to Suntex Executive Vice President Nan Ronis, who also attended the celebration, this kind of creative support from teachers and principals helps make a great program even better. “Anything that makes a connection with students, especially something creative such as writing a song, can help them relate to what they’re learning.” Laudenslager's own email signature reflects that attitude: "Math 24 isn't just for homework, it's a lifestyle!"*
Team Heat 64pa ranked #28 in the US, #15 in the state and #1 in the district for the 2009/2010 school year. Principal Josephine Galloway says that as proud as they are of the students’ FIM performance, the evidence shows that increased math activity paid also off in the form of outstanding PSSA scores.
District Math Coordinator Greg Hess brought greetings from District Superintendent Susan McGinley. He encouraged students to keep up the good work, and assured them that the Easton Area School District will continue to fund the program because of the high level of classroom participation.
* Editor’s note: The term “Math 24” is a holdover from pre-Internet days, when many teachers used Suntex’s original 24® Games as a classroom teaching tool.