Woodin Math was created by Landmark's Elementary•Middle School Math Department Head, Chris Woodin. Students with dyslexia and other language-based learning disabilities who are confused by typical math instruction can excel when instructed in a way that always shows the big picture first, uses visual-spatial images, and directly examines how the parts are connected to the whole. This program is quite different from how most of us were taught math, and it is different from most modern curriculum approaches as well. Number sense is developed by establishing a robust understanding of quantities so that their values may be compared. The methodology to be presented enables such comparison by limiting demands on language processing, working memory, and executive function skills.
Learning and memory research tells us that multisensory integration is absolutely vital for children who have learning difficulties, as well as the best way to teach all students. Experiential, gross-motor activities provide a powerful approach to interact with recognizable whole-to-part visual models. Students develop language skills necessary to describe math concepts and relationships as they perceive and process them. Simply put, students take patterns apart, then reassemble them while describing the process.
Chris's most recent publication, Multiplication and Division Facts for the Whole-to-Part, Visual Learner © 2013, features practical and hands-on strategies for teachers to use in the classroom and is now available online.
Read Chris's article on the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity website, Demystifying Math Struggles & Identifying Strategies to Help.
Chris Woodin is a specialist in the fields of mathematics and learning disabilities. A graduate of Middlebury College and Harvard Graduate School of Education, he has taught extensively at Landmark School, where he holds the Ammerman Chair of Mathematics. His published works include Multiplication and Division Facts for the Whole-to-Part, Visual Learner © 2013, and The Landmark Method of Teaching Arithmetic © 1995, as well as several journal articles. He served on the Massachusetts Department of Education's Mathematics 2011 Curriculum Frameworks Panel and currently teaches graduate-level courses to educators. Chris was the 1997 Massachusetts Learning Disabilities of America (LDA) Samuel Kirk Educator of the Year. He presents at numerous international and national conferences and leads math workshops to audiences across the country. Chris enjoys fishing, lobstering, and woodcarving.