BYOM Program
# What is the Russian Math Method?

The Russian Math Method can be explained in terms of the BYOM (Build Your Own Math) activity. The BYOM activity is an activity that challenges students to discover mathematical principles and methods on their own, by engaging them in tasks that involve learning new knowledge, transforming it, and applying it, covering all three stages of mathematical modeling.

An illustrative example of a typical BYOM activity is the following:

- The teacher presents the students with a problem: How many ways are there to arrange 5 different books on a shelf?
- The students try to solve the problem by themselves, using their own methods and strategies. They may use trial and error, drawing, counting, or other techniques.
- The teacher guides the students to share their solutions and compare them with each other. The teacher helps the students to notice patterns, similarities, and differences in their solutions.
- The teacher introduces the concept of factorial notation, which is a way of writing the product of consecutive natural numbers. For example: 5! = 5 x 4 x 3 x 2 x 1 = 120
- The teacher explains how this notation can be used to find the number of ways to arrange n different objects in order.
- The teacher asks the students to apply the factorial notation to solve the original problem and other similar problems. For example, how many ways are there to arrange 6 different books on a shelf? How many ways are there to arrange 4 different books on a shelf?
- The teacher asks the students to reflect on what they learned and how they learned it. The teacher also asks the students to think of other situations where factorial notation can be useful.

This activity illustrates how BYOM activities allow students to build their own math, rather than memorizing formulas. The students learn by doing, exploring, and discovering, rather than by listening, copying, and repeating. The students develop mathematical skills such as abstract reasoning, problem-solving, and critical thinking.

To learn more about BYOM, please consult our Q&A for Parents article. To view teachers who can teach BYOM, please view the Russian Math Teachers Listing.

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