We approach math with a sense of wonder and inquiry and seek to engage students from the earliest grades in the games and patterns that will engage them as young mathematicians. In the early years, through play and discovery activities, Preschool students begin with simple counting and one-to-one correspondence activities. Teachers use graphing, number lines and daily calendar activities to help students develop concepts in basic numeracy.
Kindergarten-Fourth Grade Math
In the kindergarten through fourth grades, the math curriculum is centered on the Comprehensive School Mathematics Program (CSMP). CSMP was developed by mathematicians from the University of Chicago who wanted students to develop a deeper understanding of number concepts and broader mathematical thinking. The program is sequential through the grades and spirals through number theory, geometry, measurement, and logic. Students are taught a variety of algorithms and approaches to solving problems. Throughout the program, number stories illustrate all functions of mathematical operations and there is a broad use of visual organizers such as webs, Venn diagrams, number lines, and graphs to support problem solving. Subsequently, students become accomplished, critical thinkers. To supplement this program, teachers integrate basic math drills into their lessons to improve fluency and to prepare students for more complex math.
Upper School Math
The Comprehensive School Mathematics Program (CSMP) continues into fifth grade. By this time, the students are becoming masters of CSMP’s mathematical tools, and use these arrow roads and minicomputers to navigate increasingly complex numerical relationships. Each lesson pulls from one strand of learning - Number Sense, Geometry, Probability/Statistics, Strings and Arrows (Grouping/Compositions) - and the curriculum follows a spiral approach, where concepts build on one another and may appear again days after being introduced. In these grades, students will touch on the foundations of division one day, locate decimals on a number line the next, and use minicomputers to manipulate complex multi-digit numbers the day after that. All of this is pulled together in the form of remarkably aesthetic and engaging workbooks that challenge students to use these tools they’ve acquired to solve them. In the end - without being explicitly taught - it is students’ problem solving and logical thinking skills that blossom and become their greatest strengths in comparison to other math programs. By 5th grade, it becomes clear that the program is fostering students who possess an understanding not just of the rote methodology of math, but the deeper relationships that underlie this universal language - and are becoming increasingly able to tackle complex and diverse problems like those that await in future STEM fields and real-world situations.
In 6th through 8th grade, our students experience a variety of mathematical approaches. The 6th grade curriculum combines the Comprehensive School Mathematics Program (CSMP) with the New York State Common Core standards, which allows students a chance to transition from the spiral curriculum they have used through fifth grade into the more advanced curriculum that they will face in seventh grade. The 6th grade program spirals through number theory, geometry, measurement, and logic topics with developmentally appropriate mathematical units sprinkled throughout. Students learn multiple perspectives to mathematics and problem solving which allows them to find solutions to problems in multiple different ways.
The 7th and 8th grade curriculum is a project-based curriculum that is aligned with the New York State Common Core standards. Students develop problem solving skills and resourcefulness through open-ended questions and projects that require them to use knowledge they have previously acquired as well as new information that they discover will be useful for a specific problem. 8th grade students have the opportunity to prepare for theNYS Regents exam in Algebra 1 which allows them to proceed to 10th grade math as they enter high school, if they perform satisfactorily on this test.