Teacher willing to dress up to excite kids about math

11:27 AM, Dec 17, 2012   |    comments
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CANTON, Ga. -- Jennifer Burcher thinks nothing of dressing up in costumes to help students understand math concepts.

She also cooks in her class once a month to help kids understand math is a part of everyday life.

Burcher's math classes are always different.

"I want people to see that math can be fun, math can be an adventure and math is something you look [at] in everyday life," said Burcher, a winner of 11Alive's Class Act Award.

To learn math while cooking, Burcher sometimes has her students double a recipe or cut it in half, to show how fractions work in the kitchen.

They also do pumpkin math.

"Where we do height and weight and circumference and we estimate the number of seeds.

She also has them do pirate math.

"We go on a pirate adventure around the whole school at Thanksgiving (time). [Students] dress up like pilgrims, [while] dressed in the whole pirate gear. I stole their booty (chocolates) and they had to find it," said Burcher.

"A lot of teachers feel like they can't afford to do these special activities because they're losing class time," said Tammy Castleberry, principal at Macedonia Elementary. "Ms. Burcher's classes had 74% of her students who exceeded criteria on the CRCT."

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