Popular New Math YouTube Channel For Visual Learners
MashUp Math is a popular new YouTube channel for teaching math to visual learners. What sets them apart from other online learning channels?
Studies show that sixty-five percent of the population has a visual learning preference. Students who learn visually rely on imagery in order to process information. Such imagery is often absent in math instruction and replaced with written notes and equations on a white board. The result of this absence of visual math instruction is an ever-growing population of disinterested students who embrace the false idea that they are not “math people.”
“When I first started teaching, my mentors expected me to adopt the traditional lecture-style of teaching, but I found it extremely boring and my students were becoming uninspired robots” says Anthony Persico, a 3rd year high school math and special education teacher and the founder of MashUp Math. Persico, a visual learner himself, began to make animated lessons and sharing them with his students on YouTube last school year.
“I knew what the studies said about the power of visual learning so I began to create animated math lessons that could translate information in a way that would motivate students, trigger their emotions, and make learning math a fun experience” said Persico, who is the charismatic young host and narrator of the video lessons. “After a few weeks of supplementing my instruction with the animations, I noticed that my students were more engaged and more interested in seeing what came next.” Beyond the revived enthusiasm of his students, their standardized test scores radically improved; over ninety percent of his geometry students passed the state exam, which was significantly higher than other teachers with several more years of teaching experience.
Since his initial experiment, Persico branded his lessons under the name MashUp Math and started a YouTube channel with an ever-growing library of animated math lessons. The lessons are extremely popular with flipped classroom educators and students seeking visual representations of difficult mathematics concepts.
So what makes MashUp Math different from other YouTube channels offering video lessons? “I don’t film myself standing at a white board solving problems or writing over a slide because those forms of instruction are verbal, not visual, in nature” says Persico, who now works with a team of interns on producing high-quality video content. “We teach math using animations that help students to visualize concepts and organize and guide their thinking through color coordination and movement; that kind of visual presentation is what we really wanted to see, but it didn’t exist so we decided to make it ourselves.” When asked what is the number one goal of MashUp Math, Persico thoughtfully shared “I want to reach that student who has given up on learning math; I want to capture the interest of that learner who can mentally absorb our animations and translate them into a conceptual understanding of a difficult concepts, which will ultimately lead to a new motivation to continue to pursue learning math.”
The animated math lessons are aligned with the common core learning standards and can be found at www.youtube.com/mashupmath; they add new lessons every week.