Our Approach: Creating Equitable Math Learning Approaches through Inclusive Research and Development (R&D) 

To reach our goals, EF+Math supports teams of educators, researchers, and developers in developing math learning approaches using inclusive R&D processes. These teams are creating prototypes and research methods that support math learning and generate new knowledge about several learning science based hypotheses for how to improve math outcomes. 

EF+Math’s core hypothesis is that developing students’ EF skills within high-quality math instructional approaches will improve math outcomes significantly. These math learning approaches support students in developing their conceptual understanding and multi-step problem solving skills, key math skills for improving math learning outcomes.  

We hypothesize that by intentionally designing for equity and creating approaches that build on students’ cultural, social, and linguistic assets, foster a sense of belonging, and provide all students with opportunities to learn challenging math and develop their identity as math learners, math learning outcomes will improve. By designing for use in real-world classrooms, the math learning approaches will be more useful and usable, which we expect will lead ultimately to better outcomes.

Our focus on leveraging an Inclusive R&D model across all project teams is a crucial part of our approach. This model is an equity-focused process that puts Black and Latinx students, students living in poverty, educators, families, and communities at the center of developing transformative math learning approaches. EF+Math’s project teams are supported directly by our Educator Leadership Council, a cornerstone of our inclusive R&D model. The Council is a diverse group of 17 educators who work at the classroom, school, and district levels. Council members provide critical expertise in middle year (grades 3–8) math curriculum and instruction and deep experience working in districts that serve Black and Latinx students and students living in poverty.