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Author Greg Tang Teaches Students Through Skype

Author Greg Tang virtually helped Lakeside Elementary School third-graders’ tally up numbers in exciting ways during a recent Skype session.

Seventy students in three classes interacted with the mathematician and children’s book writer, learning possibilities with math and how to make the sometimes-intimidating subject fun along the way.

Tang, author of “Grape of Math,” “Math Potatoes” and several other books that teach math to kids, taught students a few ways to make math computations quicker and easier. Tang is certified as a middle and high-school math teacher, according to his web site.Third-graders Brendan Burns, Reece Thurston, Jack Barnes and George Samra hold up books by Greg Tang

“He taught students the math game Kakooma and gave tips like: don’t count on your fingers, but instead always count in blocks of 10”, said student Brendan Burns.

Tang, who contacted third-grade teacher Mark Pullen through Pullen’s professional blog, offered students the chance to test his resources. Pullen said it was a way for students to easily connect with someone they are familiar with through books. “It really breaks down the walls of the classroom and lets us communicate with experts in the field,” Pullen said.

Math fans Brendan Burns, Reece Thurston, Jack Barnes and George Samra said Tang offered them fun ways to develop their love of math.

Reece said she liked trying the hardest level on the game Kakooma. “I like really hard math and I liked that he let us do it,” she said.

Connect: Greg Tang

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Erin Albanese
Erin Albanese is associate managing editor and reporter, covering Byron Center, Kentwood, Wyoming and Grand Rapids Community College. She was one of the original SNN staff writers, helping launch the site in 2013 and enjoys fulfilling the mission of sharing the stories of public education. She has worked as a journalist in the Grand Rapids area since 2000. A graduate of Central Michigan University, she has written for The Grand Rapids Press, Advance Newspapers, On-the-Town Magazine and Group Tour Media. Read Erin's full bio

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