wHAT A mATH INTERVENTIONIST DOES
My role as a math interventionist is to aid regular classroom math instruction, not to replace it. I am not a special educator. Most of my work is set in regular classrooms, and can take many forms: I might teach or co-teach a whole-class lesson, work with a small group, or go desk-to-desk, checking with students as they work. There are times I may work with students in my own room. Such times are chosen with great care so that no new regular instruction is missed. I have the state license for specialization in elementary mathematics, and extensive experience in teaching math with a wide variety of approaches.
I also work closely with many classroom teachers in evaluating students, analyzing data, making plans for enrichment, and plans to help students who are struggling. I help classroom teachers with regular instruction as well as differentiation. My role provides a unique and valuable view of the math curriculum: I see all the lessons in all the grades, K-3, and I'm in classrooms during math blocks every day. I can see how the lessons fit together, and how the models we use are adapted through the grades. When someone asks "Why are we doing this?" I can say where the curriculum is going next year, and what has been done the year before to set up what's going on today. If a particular lesson is especially difficult for students, I can help teachers anticipate and adapt to the potential roadblocks. I can communicate what's working from classroom to classroom on a daily basis.
The benefits of my involvement in a classroom do not end there. Having another set of highly qualified eyes in the classroom helps a great deal in assessment. The benefits of having another teacher, especially in a classroom where many students need extra attention, affect all the students in the class. When some of the students are ready to move on, I can help them, or the classroom teacher can while I help others catch up. Differentiation is about meeting the needs of all the students in a class, not just the ones who struggle.