What is the problem you're trying to solve?
Educators wishing to teach mathematics and numeracy as tools for understanding current events can find some inspiration from print books and static websites.     However, we live in a world in which information and misinformation are dynamic, not static. Students also have diverse interests and experiences, and they expect diverse and relevant content in their lessons.
Instructors wishing to select relevant news content are advised to “Have 80-90% of the articles to be studied assembled ahead of time and organized into topics with specific learning objectives.”  This places a burden on the teacher who must not only find all these articles but also design and refine accompanying lesson plans in accordance with best practices. All of this is compounded by our own evolving understanding of media literacy, as well.  
Wikiversity provides the infrastructure to make this process more efficient and effective for instructors, but it is missing two important elements:
- a learning project pairing news with math lesson plans, and
- a community of math educators to sustain the project.
What is your solution?
We propose a two-part solution.
First, we will lay the foundation of a new learning project on Wikiversity. The project will be based on user-contributed entries, each pairing a news article or social media post with a math lesson. The foundation we provide will motivate and orient new users with
- engaging example entries,
- clear contributor guidelines and tutorials, and
- thoughtful information architecture.
Second, we will assemble an inclusive community of math educators who can
- steer the project,
- sustain it with entries on emerging topics,
- verify data sources and review analyses,
- refine entries based on classroom experience, and
- update guidelines with knowledge from education research.
We will call the resulting collection of up-to-date and diverse lesson plans Eventmath. Since mathematics and current events are unlimited in breadth and relevant to all, Eventmath will provide an unparalleled growth opportunity for Wikiversity.
Portal Goal: Create a portal for a new learning project on the Wikiversity platform, based on our existing Eventmath template and example lesson plans. By following sound SEO practices and design principles, this portal will help more math educators discover and join the Wikiversity community.
Campaign Goal: Execute a campaign to recruit volunteers and teach them topic-specific editing skills. This will create a new community of math educators who can contribute their expertise to Wikiversity.
How will you know if you have met your goals?
For each of the goals listed above, we have measurable outputs and anticipated outcomes.
Do you have any goals around participation or content?
The campaign goal includes target outcomes regarding both content and participation.
Our activities will contribute to one or both of the main goals: creating the Eventmath portal, and executing a campaign to recruit users. The table below organizes these activities into themes, and it labels which goal(s) the activities contribute to. We each plan to contribute approximately ten hours per week, for a total of twenty hours per week, from mid-May through mid-August. This will allow us to ready Eventmath for the beginning of a new academic year.
|Adapt existing materials to Wikiversity||
|Develop quality standard||
We will develop a quality assessment scheme for entries to help users find articles to use or improve, possibly modeled after the WikiProject Mathematics scheme.
|Promote on social media||
|Deliver live online workshops||
Live online workshops will be hosted by bwsulliv. He has been editing Wikimedia projects since 2006 and is skilled at running online group sessions, since he has been teaching online math classes for the past year. During the workshops, he will
Feedback from workshop participants, both during the workshop and in a follow-up survey, will help us improve the portal, as well.
Portal and Campaign
Greg at Higher Math Help runs the Higher Math Notes YouTube channel. His top video has over 100,000 views, and he has at least 2,290 subscribers. He will produce engaging videos and host them on his channel. Specifically, he will produce videos of the following approximate durations and types:
Portal and Campaign
|Promote via the press||
We will develop a list of contacts at relevant media outlets, including contacts at newsletters and blogs read by significant numbers of math educators. We will then craft and distribute press releases to announce major updates, such as grant approval and completion of the project portal.
|Promote through existing events and organizations||
The activities described above require time and expertise, so we will outline a budget below based on how many hours we expect to spend working on each theme of activities.
|Theme of activities||Estimated total hours|
|Adapt existing materials to Wikiversity||60 hours|
|Develop guidelines for Wikiversity portal||30 hours|
|Promotion on social media||20 hours|
|Live online workshops||30 hours|
|Promotional and instructional videos||60 hours|
|Promotion in the press||20 hours|
|Conferences and other academic promotion||20 hours|
This yields a total of 240 hours and, at a rate of $40/hour, a proposed budget of $9600. We believe this is a reasonable hourly rate for the kind of work to be done, given the technical and content-area expertise that is required.
We are directing our efforts toward math educators because of the expertise they derive from classroom experience. Not only do they create lessons, but also they use those lessons to help students in real time. This immediate feedback about what works and what doesn't can then be fed back into the lesson plans that are the heart of Eventmath. This is the virtuous cycle that we need in order to create a best-in-class resource. To set this cycle in motion, we are beginning with lesson plans that teachers will want to use. Since spreading awareness of these lesson plans is one of our two main goals, we have included a detailed promotional and engagement strategy under the Activities section.
Grantees and Project Leads
- Content creation
- Produced a video with over 100,000 views on YouTube.
- Attracted over 2,290 subscribers to his Higher Math Notes YouTube channel.
- Crafted thousands of customized tutoring lessons in high-school, undergraduate, and graduate-level mathematics.
- Tutored math full-time for over a decade.
- Delivered tutoring sessions exclusively online since 2013.
- Taught both high-school and university courses in the classroom.
- Relevant technology
- Edited Wikipedia articles on mathematics.
- Created highermathhelp.com, including assets and content.
- Designed interactive presentation on basic linear algebra using LaTeX and Beamer.
- Founded and marketed the tutoring service Higher Math Help since 2009.
- Reached new clients across the US by optimizing highermathhelp.com for search engines.
- Tutored math in Spanish to groups of students, both as a volunteer and as a paid tutor.
- Served as a volunteer translator and interpreter in settings including a refugee center, a tax clinic, and Habitat for Humanity.
- Edited Spanish-language captions for YouTube and could contribute to a Spanish version of Eventmath after this grant ends.
Brendan W. Sullivan
- Taught undergraduate-level mathematics for over ten years, currently as an Assistant Professor of Mathematics.
- Focused on teaching numeracy and quantitative skills through courses aimed primarily at non-mathematics majors.
- Authored a textbook introducing students to mathematical proofs.
- Delivered live online math classes to groups of approximately 20 students throughout the past year.
- Relevant technology
- Contributed Wikipedia edits since 2006.
- Worked with HTML, LaTeX, and Beamer.
Interested Users and Contributors
These individuals and organizations have expressed interest in contributing to Eventmath or in using it as a teaching resource.
Please add your name and institution/organization to this list if you are also interested in using and/or contributing to Eventmath!
- Benjamin Allen, Emmanuel College
- David Earls, Emmanuel College
- Heather Pierce, Emmanuel College
- Volunteer I would be interested in using these materials for our liberal arts mathematics course (an perhaps other courses as well). 18.104.22.168 16:19, 11 February 2021 (UTC)
- Volunteer I would like to contribute relevant data to the project. 22.214.171.124 15:06, 16 February 2021 (UTC)
- Michael Anthony Lewis, Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College
- contacted colleagues and others with an interest in numeracy,
- sent a message to the mailing list for Wikiversity,
- posted on the Colloquium page at Wikiversity, and
- messaged Wikiversitarians who have made contributions related to math or current events, on their user talk pages.
Do you think this project should be selected for a Project Grant? Please add your name and rationale for endorsing this project below! (Other constructive feedback is welcome on the discussion page).
- Support The proposal appears to be well-planned and well-written. Its stated goals are consistent with the v:Wikiversity:Mission. Its targeted outcomes are attainable. We have a variety of legitimate educational resources that appear in the top five on Google searches. My only concern is that neither of the primary contributors have experience working with the Wikiversity community. I trust that they will be able to work with us when the time comes. -- Dave Braunschweig (talk) 14:23, 10 February 2021 (UTC)
- Support As the WMF enters its third decade, we need to focus on fostering the smaller projects and Wikiversity has a huge potential to scale. —Justin (koavf)❤T☮C☺M☯ 16:41, 10 February 2021 (UTC)
- I am interested to see if students can get more out of their math classes. It is frequently argued that math improves critical thinking skills, but I think that is much more likely to be the case if non-contrived real life examples are used that actively facilitates that skill transfer, rather than leaving the students to their own devices. A community effort is the best way to achieve that goal. I have studied and tutored math with Greg, so I am confident that he would be a great contributor. --Tarek Fadali Tarek150 (talk) 17:29, 10 February 2021 (UTC)
- Math projects based on current events are key to engaging students and cultivating mathematical literacy. But crafting a good project is difficult and takes time! I would love to be able to share the projects I've created, and borrow good ideas from other creative math educators. 2601:197:A80:2810:1CC8:184A:3668:28CD 01:53, 11 February 2021 (UTC)
- Greg has been been my tutor off and on for several years. He has been so helpful. It is very rare to find some one who can teach basic and advanced mathematics. He is very passionate about helping and educating others. I am very glad he wants to help even more people with this new project. MathGoddess77 (talk) 04:55, 11 February 2021 (UTC)
- I am a former colleague of Greg Stanton's at Indiana University and taught college level mathematics for ten years. I often tried to construct lesson plans around news articles and current events to motivate and interest my students as well as to provide relatable, grounded examples to better understand abstract concepts. Lessons of this type were hugely costly in time and resources and often times resulted in dead ends when the connection between the article and the lesson proved weak. The resource described in this proposal would have been hugely beneficial to my lesson plan construction and would have greatly aided my students in learning and comprehension. --Dr. John Williams, Mathematician/Data Scientist at Chronotruck France.
- I'm a mathematics educator who would absolutely love it if there were such a resource. --Spencer Bagley, Westminster College (UT) 2601:681:4B01:6D0:CD7A:470D:D02A:1E0C 17:11, 11 February 2021 (UTC)
- I appreciate that students ask how mathematics relates to the real-world and their daily lives, and I strongly support a project that endeavors to answer this question concretely. 126.96.36.199 17:28, 11 February 2021 (UTC)
- As a college math instructor, I am always trying to find real-world data and resources to help my students see the relevance of mathematics in today's world. This project would make the search that much easier, and provide lessons to tie in the math as well. 2602:306:24D1:4039:E48F:25B0:C44C:DA45 22:39, 11 February 2021 (UTC)
- I'm a math educator (college professor) and a resource like this would be invaluable for me and my students. I often want to create lessons like this but don't have the time day-to-day; a pooled wiki-type resource would be wonderful! 188.8.131.52 06:39, 12 February 2021 (UTC)
- This looks like a great way to share ideas to increase engagement for those who teach non-math-majors. 184.108.40.206 21:36, 12 February 2021 (UTC)
- I found this resource through online networking and feel that it will grow to be a productive and creative resource for math educators and students. This project allows for community engagement, which is something that needs to be more present in mathematics education. --Marissa Maldonado, Boise State University
- This would be an *amazingly* useful central resource for mathematics and statistics instructors, and could eventually make adopting and OER approach much easier across the board. 2601:602:81:2880:55B8:7983:9EFD:48FE 17:25, 15 February 2021 (UTC)
- I am always looking for relevant problems to use in my mathematics courses, especially introductory courses like College Algebra and Introduction to Statistics. Using current, relevant information helps connect the material to actual information relevant in the real world today. 220.127.116.11 15:06, 16 February 2021 (UTC)
- Simply this seems like a great idea and good resource. I often try to do this on my own, on the fly, for my own classes. It would be helpful to have an organized pool of resources. 2600:1700:6C70:4F60:B037:EA4E:4FBA:C09 15:26, 18 February 2021 (UTC)
- Support DavidMCEddy (talk) 20:58, 19 February 2021 (UTC)
- Support Looks like a solid project. It would also be good for Wikiversity, I think. -Guy vandegrift (talk) 02:46, 20 February 2021 (UTC)
- Think this is a great idea! I'd definitely be interested in using Eventmath as it would facilitate collaboration amongst colleagues. This will, in turn, ultimately enhance the student learning experience 18.104.22.168 18:38, 22 February 2021 (UTC)