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Volunteers Wanted for Chicago GoFest

Friday August 22, 2014

The Go and Math Academy in Chicago is looking for volunteers to help to promote go/weiqi at a Chinese cultural festival on 2014.08.22_Go-and-math-chicagoSeptember 27. About 1,500 students are expected to attend the daylong festival. “We need volunteers to prepare some activities and interact with visitors,” says local organizer Xinming Simon Guo 2d. “Because we have promoted go in Chicago schools for many years (McCormick Elementary Students Learn Go (And Math))  7/29 EJ), probably some visitors already know the basic rules.” Contact Guo at simonguoxm@gmail.com for details on how to volunteer.
photo: Guo teaching at the LaSalle Language Academy

Categories: U.S./North America
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McCormick Elementary Students Learn Go (And Math)

Tuesday July 29, 2014

Students at McCormick Elementary, in Chicago, IL, had the opportunity recently to learn to play go from Xinming Simon Guo 2d, a licensed math teacher and founder of the GoAndMath Academy. “Students were playing a simple game during the class, blissfully unaware that they were also working on math skills as they put every stone on the board and counted the result at the end of the game,” Guo told the E-Journal.

At McCormick, the go class is part of the Chinese Artists-In-Residency Program, co-sponsored by Confucius Institute in Chicago (CIC) and GoAndMath Academy. The Chinese language teachers at McCormick — where 99.5% of the students are hispanic and 50% are English Language Learners – Ms. Yeh and Ms. Huang, heard about the go program during the professional workshop organized by CIC last year. “Go is an ideal tool to achieve the goal of our Chinese curriculum–to enhance students’ understanding of Chinese culture, and reinforce their learning of language skills,” says Guo. “During the entire 2013-2014 school year, the go program offered more than 130 learning sections to more than 4500 students in Chicago public schools,”  said Jane Lu, the director of CIC and coordinator of CPS Chinese World Language Program.

“Go is not just a simple game,” says Guo. “Research by GoAndMath Academy reveals that there exists a hidden natural connection between math and go. Students can experience math concepts without even noticing them. More specifically, go helps students develop number sense, and three domains in Common Core standards: Counting and Cardinality; Operations and Algebraic Thinking; and Number and Operations in Base Ten. GoAndMath Academy designed the educational go program, which is appropriate for Pre-K through eighth grade, is aligned with the common core standards, and can be played with peers in school or around the world. This fantastic game combines math, science, art, and competition, as well as ancient oriental philosophy and culture. Go requires the highest level of critical thinking. It cultivates the abilities of observing, reflecting, imagining, reasoning, innovating, and decision-making,” says Guo.
- Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  Photo: Guo demonstrates the secrets of holding the go stone.

Future Teachers Learn About Go

Monday June 4, 2012

Chicago, IL, math teacher Xinming Simon Guo (at right in green shirt) introduced go to 10 pre-service teachers (teaching students) at  National Louis University on May 22. “I began my introduction to go by  pointing out the geometric shapes of circles and lines on the go board, allowing teachers to see connections between go and Number Theory,” reports Guo.  “Next I discussed the fundamental origin of go and the basic rules of the game, and then talked about the deep Chinese culture embedded in the game. These pre-service teachers started their first games on small 9×9 boards after they had learned two basic terms, “Qi” (“liberty”) and “Atari” (stones with only one qi left). After the games finished, we discussed how to integrate the game with Common Core State Standards of Math, which are internationally benchmarked standards and assessments to prepare students for success in college and the workplace.” Pre-service education is for student teachers, who have not yet taught in a classroom.   “Since I teach math, Chinese, and go, I am able to combine all of them in an approach to learning and problem-solving,” says Guo. “In my math classes I introduce go as a tool to cultivate number sense. Students can get an intuitive understanding of numbers, their magnitude, relationships, and how they are affected by operations. In my Chinese language classes, I introduce go with visual literacy, which helps beginners to learn numbers in Chinese. For advanced Chinese language learners, go can be one centerpiece to link the 5C standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century: Communication, Culture, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities. In my go class, math and Chinese language elements are threaded throughout the curriculum. The pre-service workshop was a very special opportunity for me,” said Guo, “because my students were teachers. If one teacher learns about go and is passionate about it, then his or her students will have more chances to touch this marvelous game,” added Guo. - Paul Barchilon, EJ Youth Editor; photo: Guo teaching kids at Lake Forest Academy.