Season 6, Episode 1

Defining math fluency

Season 6 of Math Teacher Lounge is here!

This season, we’ll be digging deep into math fluency—exploring what it is, looking into the research around it, and sharing practical tips for building it in math classrooms. Join us as we kick things off this week with Jason Zimba, Amplify’s chief academic officer of STEM!

In our first episode, we sat down with Jason to get a clear understanding of what math fluency is and what we really mean when we talk about it. As a prominent math advocate with many years of experience, he can also help us learn just how important fluency is and how it fits into the standards.

Listen today and don’t forget to grab your MTL study guide to track your learning and make the most of this episode!

Meet our guest(s):

Jason Zimba

Jason serves as Amplify’s chief academic officer of STEM. Previously, he co-founded Student Achievement Partners, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping teachers and school leaders implement equitable, high-quality, college and career-ready standards. Jason is a Rhodes scholarship recipient and a former professor of physics and mathematics. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Williams College, with a double major in mathematics and astrophysics; a master’s degree in mathematics from the University of Oxford; and a doctorate in mathematical physics from the University of California at Berkeley.

Meet our hosts: Bethany Lockhart Johnson and Dan Meyer

Bethany Lockhart Johnson is an elementary school educator and author. Prior to serving as a multiple-subject teacher, she taught theater and dance, and now loves incorporating movement and creative play into her classroom. Bethany is committed to helping students find joy in discovering their identities as mathematicians. In addition to her role as a full-time classroom teacher, Bethany is a Student Achievement Partners California Core Advocate and is active in national and local mathematics organizations. Bethany is a member of the Illustrative Mathematics Elementary Curriculum Steering Committee and serves as a consultant, creating materials to support families during distance learning.

Dan Meyer taught high school math to students who didn’t like high school math. He has advocated for better math instruction on CNN, Good Morning America, Everyday With Rachel Ray, and He earned his doctorate from Stanford University in math education and is currently the Dean of Research at Desmos, where he explores the future of math, technology, and learning. Dan has worked with teachers internationally and in all 50 United States and was named one of Tech & Learning’s 30 Leaders of the Future.


“The dials are all mixed up on fluency. On the one hand, I worry that word problems and applications...get proceduralized, and so we are aiming for fluency on something that is not a procedure in the first place.” —Jason Zimba