The STBS Mathematics Curriculum is grounded in the philosophy of learning described below.
There is a mathematician within each of us.
- This mathematician can be accessed
- Students should experience mathematics in a way that is both understandable and challenging
Mathematics is a fascinating world of its own.
- The world of mathematics provides a rich and engaging context for developing an understanding of what it means to think mathematically – to grapple with difficult problems, to question and challenge ideas, and to conjecture and generalize about relationships
Experience with models for math concepts helps us understand, invent, and remember important math ideas.
- Through the use of manipulative materials, models, sketches and diagrams, students develop an understanding of mathematical concepts and processes and create meaningful mental images that help them retain and recall information
Learning mathematics is a social activity.
- The process of examining and discussing our thoughts can reveal contradictions, insights, inconsistencies, and connections that might otherwise go unnoticed
- We learn when we question, explain, and listen to ideas
Learning mathematics is an ongoing process of knowledge construction.
- We construct new understanding each time we consider an idea from a different point of view
- The importance of continually looking for new perspectives is emphasized along with “mastery” of any one idea and memorization of procedures
“Imbalance” stimulates new learning.
- We develop a deep and broad knowledge when we allow time for confusion to be processed
- Concrete experiences, social interactions, and discernment provide the student with perspectives that may contradict their present points of view
- It is important that students view their struggles with problems as evidence that learning is “in progress”