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Math Expert Dr. Francis (Skip) Fennell Endorses Hand2Mind’S Hands-On Standards

hand2mind and Fennell invite educators and administrators to join a special math-focused webinar on Tuesday, February 16

Today hand2mind, an award-winning educational resource company, has announced a new partnership with the former president of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Francis “Skip” Fennell, an esteemed educator who has dedicated his professional life to mathematics and has greatly influenced what and how math is taught in today’s classroom. Fennell, a current professor of education at McDaniel College, has provided his endorsement of hand2mind’s Hands-On Standards product line, which helps K-8 educators and parents teach math with manipulatives to build problem-solving skills. To help kick off the partnership, hand2mind and Fennell invite educators and administrators to a free, informative webinar on Tuesday, February 16, focused on the benefits of implementing authentic tasks, representations, and a daily problem-solving routine with the goal of helping strengthen students’ understanding of math concepts.

“hand2mind’s Hands-On Standards is an amazing collection of resources that will not just supplement, but more so fully enrich mathematics teaching and learning in any classroom, with seemingly endless paths for students to be truly engaged in the mathematics they are learning,” said Skip Fennell. “The use of manipulatives and related representations to both develop and extend conceptual understandings through scaffolded lessons will increase learning opportunities and deepen student understanding, which is the ultimate end goal for us as educators.”

Hands-On Standards

Created by hand2mind in 2012, Hands-On Standards reinforces key, grade-level math concepts and helps students deepen their understanding with hands-on manipulatives and activities. Now available in both classroom and at-home learning solutions, students can enjoy step-by-step, photo-illustrated guides as well as follow along with physical tools and manipulatives that help them seamlessly transition from the concrete to abstract math concepts. New to Hands-On Standards in 2021 for K–2 are additional manipulatives such as the NumberLine™ Clock, a new mini-lesson format, a new problem-solving routine with a progressing series of problem types focused around key grade-level skills, online student pages aligned to lessons (available in Spanish), and intervention lessons that match the mini-lesson format and include assessment and progress monitoring tools.

“To have Skip, who is such an important figure in the education and mathematics fields, endorse Hands-On Standards is both an honor and a testament to our hand2mind team that developed this product line into a trusted tool used by educators and families around the country,” said Leslie Lee, Marketing Director of hand2mind. “Teaching math with manipulatives is proven to help students gain a greater understanding of the concepts they are learning. We recognize that math is an area of growing concern for both parents and teachers due to distance learning, so we feel this partnership couldn’t have come at a better time to address pandemic-related learning gaps.”

Fennell’s Background

Fennell’s experience and expertise make him the ideal educator to review and critique hand2mind’s Hands-On Standards product line. An industry-leading author, speaker, and educator, Fennell is widely published in professional journals and textbooks related to PreK–8 mathematics education. As a well-respected writer on both the NCTM Focal Points and Common Core State Standards, Fennell served as President of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) from 2006–2008 and was a founding member of the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators. In 2006, Fennell was appointed to the National Mathematics Advisory Panel by President George W. Bush, where he helped bring attention to important issues in the education field. He has received numerous awards including Maryland’s Outstanding Mathematics Educator award as well as the distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award from NCTM in 2012.


To help kick off the partnership, Fennell will be a special guest during a hand2mind-hosted webinar on Tuesday, February 16 at 4:45 p.m. EST (3:45 p.m. CST) titled “Math Mindsets Matter: Developing Problem Solvers, not Problem Performers”. Focused on K–5 classrooms, Fennel will share how to use authentic tasks, representations, including hands-on tools, and a daily problem-solving routine to engage students in building and extending their mathematical knowledge. The online event is free and open to all administrators and educators and pre-registration can be completed at this link. (

To learn more about hand2mind, please visit, and follow on social media at @hand2mindinc on Facebook, at @hand2mindinc on Instagram, and at @hand2mind on Twitter.

ABOUT hand2mind

At hand2mind, we believe children learn best by doing. For over 50 years, teachers and school administrators at thousands of schools and districts across the country have relied on our high-quality, hands-on materials to expand their core curriculum. Offering resources for math, science, STEM, and literacy, our mission is to support teachers, inspire students, engage parents, and champion learning by doing. For more information, please visit or follow the brand on Twitter @hand2mind, Facebook @hand2mindinc, and Instagram @hand2mindinc.


eSchool News Staff

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