Lynn Marecek and MaryAnne Anthony-Smith are Professors of Mathematics at Santa Ana College in Santa Ana, California, where they have each been honored with the college’s Distinguished Faculty Award. They have worked together on many projects focused on improving student learning in the developmental mathematics courses.
Lynn and MaryAnne each have three adult children. Years ago, while volunteering in their children’s classrooms, both Lynn and MaryAnne became fascinated at the methods they saw being used to develop mathematical concepts through the use of manipulatives. They decided to adapt these methods to the adult college learner, and obtained a number of grants to develop curriculum and purchase materials for the Santa Ana College developmental mathematics classes.
Recognizing a need to improve literacy as well as bolster math foundations, they wrote curriculum to link children’s math literature to the curriculum of the college Prealgebra course. Using any available funding they found, they purchased books for the college library. As an added benefit, the library’s books are used by children who come to the library with their college student parents!
Many college students have poorly developed study skills. Lynn and MaryAnne believe teachers of developmental mathematics should proactively assist their students in improving their study skills. To this end, they created study skills activities, which they call Strategies for Success and Take Charge of Your Success.
These projects have been integrated and unified into a cohesive textbook, Foundations of Algebra.
Lynn and MaryAnne have given presentations about the components of Foundations of Algebra at recent annual conferences of AMATYC, CMC3, CMC3-S, CalADE, NCTM, ICTCM, and On Course.