Adventures in Exploding Dots Professional Development

Transform the Math Classroom

Powerful math PD based on live classroom action!

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What Makes This Unique

The Adventures in Exploding Dots Professional Development Program is a series of live online math lessons for students led by trained Global Math Project coaches.

Here's how it works:

  • GMP coach leads a live online Exploding Dots lesson.
  • Classroom teachers observe their students in action.
  • GMP coach and teachers debrief after each lesson.
  • Teachers gain access to all lesson and practice materials.

Think of this as expert math coaching for your teachers, along with transformational lessons and experiences for your students.

What teachers get:

  • Valuable insights into how your students think and approach problem solving.
  • Expert math coaching.
  • Tools to move from direct instruction to student-centered experiences.

What students get:

  • A deep sense that mathematics is accessible.
  • Joy and meaning to school mathematics.
  • Increased confidence in problem solving.

"It’s so rare that you find PD models that equally attend to students and teachers. Teachers can see the learning with the kids in progress. There is huge power in seeing the learning and the understanding unfold from the beginning to the end."

Math Director, Tucson, AZ

"After the Exploding Dots lessons test results across nearly 60 students showed a 16% improvement for subtraction and a 9% improvement for division.

Thanks again for this awesome resource!"

Teacher, New Castle, Australia

"Even my students who don’t normally feel like they are ‘good at math’ feel successful with Exploding Dots. Brilliant!"

Teacher, Phoenix AZ

"It changed my view of math … Now I am confident and more excited about math."

Student, Las Vegas, NV.

What's in the Exploding Dots Lessons

6 million students and teachers across the globe have discovered Exploding Dots and describe it as “mind blowing.”

The invention of place value is one of humankind's greatest intellectual achievements. It is surprisingly nuanced, and it permeates the entire K-12 curriculum (and beyond!). So many state mathematics standards rely on a deep understanding of place value.

LESSONS 1 and 2

Set the scene for developing a truly solid understanding of place value.

We give the human story of mathematics: we discuss our quirky naming of numbers, for instance, why we focus on the number 10 in arithmetic, and why some cultures chose base 12, base 20, or base 60!

LESSONS 3 and 4

Probe all the standard school arithmetic algorithms we think we already know so well.

These lessons provide an "intellectual jolt" and develop the meta-cognition and mindset for profound mathematical thinking for upper elementary, middle school, and high school students alike.

LESSONS 5 and 6

Explore division, decimals, and the art of writing fractions as decimals.

These lessons subtly introduce the sophisticated ideas needed for the advanced the high-school curriculum in grade-appropriate ways.

LESSONS 7 and 8 (for High School)

Discover polynomial algebra within the story of place value!

Student-owned insights unfold as students create infinite series and produce examples of numbers that they can personally prove to be irrational. All is connected and all is seen as natural and straightforward.


For Grades 5-8

  • Six 45-minute lessons with students
  • Teachers observe students while GMP trainer leads each lesson.
  • Debriefing after each lesson
  • Plus access to all our teacher guides and practice materials.


For Grades 9-12

  • Eight 45-minute lessons with students plus a bonus lesson!
  • Teachers observe students while GMP trainer leads each lesson.
  • Debriefing after each lesson
  • Plus access to all our teacher guides and practice materials.


Note sure this is manageable for your school budget? Email us to discuss options.

Frequently Asked Questions

In what language do you offer these sessions?
Initially in English. But we are training GMP coaches who speak other languages how to conduct these sessions too.

Do you provide worksheets and homework for these classes?
Our Teacher Guides (which we share with you) contain student handouts and practice questions, to be shared and discussed if desired.

Class time is precious. Why would a teacher give up 6 to 8 class periods for this?
Our work is curriculum connected and curriculum relevant, but we are not following a particular lesson program. Teachers tell us that our program changes their students’ view of mathematics, creates a growth mindset for all participants, and increases willingness and confidence in problem-solving. The long-term payoffs may well outweigh the short-term worries of “getting through” the immediate curriculum.

Can I, as a teacher, watch and learn too?
Absolutely. Math joy is for one and all! Plus, teachers are expected to join in!

Do you teach these lessons live or are they pre-recorded?
All of our lessons are taught live by trained GMP coaches. For the moment, all lessons are conducted via Zoom. Once students return to classrooms we will provide a mix of in-person and Zoom lessons depending upon location.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. The Global Math Project is proudly hosted by the American Institute of Mathematics, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization

Images courtesy of Mary Kemper