EndorsementsENDORSEMENTS OF JAMIE YORK, author, Waldorf math teacher, consultant and math missionary. Eugene Schwartz, author of The Milennial Child and other books on Waldorf education. Schwartz is perhaps the foremost consultant on Waldorf education, nationally and internationally. Mathematics is an intimidating subject for many class teachers, and it is not surprising that poor math skills are an egregious quality of too many Waldorf graduates. Jamie York’s Waldorf math books have served as a salutary solution to this problem. Rather than cater to teachers’ fears by encouraging schools to bring in math specialists, Jamie has striven to empower class teachers with math guides that are models of clarity and rigor, but also filled with enthusiasm and encouragement. Jamie’s work is unique, and his texts and workbooks have been the salvation of many a Waldorf teacher — and many Waldorf students. Torin Finser, Education Department Chair of Antioch University of New England and General Secretary of the Anthroposophical Society in America. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees and Pedagogical Advisory Council member of the Center for Anthroposophy. I have known Jamie for many years now, and am continually impressed with his originality, creativity, and attention to the needs of aspiring teachers. Jamie’s Waldorf math work deserves wide circulation, not just within Waldorf schools, but for all teachers who want to improve math teaching and the learning of their students! What Waldorf Waldorf math teacher trainees and others have said about Jamie York’s books, videos, workshops and his math missionary work in general: TAIWAN WALDORF CHARTER SCHOOL ADMINISTRATOR: We appreciate Jamie York’s willingness to devote his time and share his profession over two weeks at Ci-Xin Waldorf school in Yilan, Taiwan. He gave our teachers a lot of valuable suggestions during discussions with them. Jamie offered parents an open lecture to share the art of teaching math, so that they could better comprehend our efforts with math and support our teachers. Students, teachers, parents all gained a lot from his visit. Shihmin, Taiwan. 在台灣宜蘭慈心華德福學校兩週的時間，Jamie York樂於貢獻他的時間與所長，充分與教師對話與討論，高中部學生於課堂中逐步學習，並回饋以勇敢的自我挑戰，嘗試以英文完成工作本。Jamie也提供一場給家長的公開演講，分享數學教學的藝術，家長更能體會華德福學校數學教育的用心，並學習與老師合作。這次的來訪，無論學生和教師團隊均感到收穫滿盈。 STUDENT TEACHER: I started watching your lecture series recently as I am studying to be a teacher in Sweden. I just wanted to let you know that you are a great inspiration, not least in my decision to move to Waldorf. Thank you! Message via our Facebook page WORKSHOP PARTICIPANT/TEACHER: Thank you very much, once again Jamie, for a wonderfully inspiring conference! Marianne A, London, UK Teacher, workshop participant. WORKSHOP PARTICIPAN/TEACHER: Thank you for your excellent workshop in Devon. It’s been rejuvenating for me, and has made me rethink some of the ways I present Maths to my upper school classes. Alexandra, UK Teacher, workshop participant, Devon, UK. TEACHER: I am just completing my third Waldorf class teaching cycle and have used the Making Math Meaningful curriculum guides and workbooks for this cycle. My present eighth graders have mathematical thinking skills and basic arithmetic skills that surpass my former two classes. The grades six, seven, eight workbooks are challenging for me as a class teacher and definitely for my student. But it is a delight to experience the students’ enthusiasm when they “get it” with a new concept or remember a solution method from a previous year. I taught using more mainstream math textbooks in my previous classes and, while my students went on to be solid high school and college math students, they did not show the level of creative and confident mathematical problem solving that my present class has. As an experienced Waldorf math teacher, Jamie York shows a deep understanding of when and how to introduce age-appropriate material and leads the teacher through the introduction of the pedagogical basis of each theme. He avoids the possible over-emphasis on teaching students math procedural skills and encourages teaching slowly and thoroughly, so that students deeply absorb the material. And by helping a math or class teacher show how math is a fascinating, creative, yet quite achievable endeavor, Mr. York has helped me develop students who are on the path to becoming imaginative, analytical thinkers in high school. Nancy Pierce, Portland, OR, USA. TEACHER: I’m a 6th Grade Waldorf Teacher and my students worked with your workbook this year, and I took many inspirations from your Middle School Curriculum Guide. I just wanted to let you know what a fabulous, positive experience it was. I think I found myself a bit in that “difficult middle school spot” that teachers can get into. Parents wonder if what the class teacher offers is “enough” and how they will ever “learn” to use worksheets and such. My students have always been enthusiastic mathematicians. They loved working with the book, which we completed and are reviewing now during the past few weeks of school. I’m looking forward to using your workbooks for 7th grade as well. Claudia Thomas, Richmond, VA, USA. TEACHER TRAINEE: Thank you so much for addressing head on the issue of math education and the traumatic style in which it is generally delivered. I’m so excited to be learning from you. Tomas, NH, USA. TEACHER TRAINEE: Jamie, you are more than a missionary! You are an expression of freeness in thinking about math education in life! NH, USA. TEACHER/Public Waldorf Charter School: I’ve been teaching many grade levels K-8 over the last ten years in mainstream education (five in Waldorf education) and have had my hands on many math curricula that were adequate in teaching the basic concepts in the different mathematical strands. But I always found that the programs were lacking in creating lasting understanding, enthusiasm and confidence with numbers. I began working with Making Math Meaningful in my fifth grade classroom at Madrone Trail Public Waldorf school in Oregon, and my students and I became so interested in what they might find out about how numbers worked! This carried into the junior high years, where many student who don’t have a natural affinity for numbers often become discouraged and uninterested in math. Through daily practice with the Making Math Meaningful’s workbooks, my students developed an amazing fluency and knack for the nature of numbers. !00% of the my students have met their math benchmarks for our state in 6th and 7th grade. This is only one measure of the efficacy of a math program. Through using this curriculum, my students are more creative in their problem solving and critical thinking, have cultivated good work habits and have come to find that each of them are able to learn the magic of mathematics. Most importantly perhaps, all of my students, regardless of ability, have come face to face with math problems that have challenged them to work and rework until a solution is found, and it is this skill that has helped prepare a group of 8th graders who will begin high school with a strong knowledge of self. They have developed a set of characteristics that will help them push forward when they’re in doubt and start working through an issue that seems to have no solution in sight. Jamie York has managed to prepare a math curriculum that supports the development of the whole child. It can be used by main stream public educators as well as in the Waldorf classroom and it has become the must-have element of our school’s very successful math program. Alyssum Barber, OR, USA.