Math & Science Program

Program Statement for Math/Science Development grade 1 to 12

Taught in English at The Olympia Schools, our math courses are truly integrated both in terms of language and content, for math is the foundation for scientific discoveries; thus, our approach is holistic and interdisciplinary. It is essential that all of our students demonstrate competency in their ability to:

• Interpret, manipulate, and process numeric data

• Use quantitative reasoning to solve problems and support arguments

• Express cohesive ideas using numbers, data, charts, and graphs

• Make predictions and extrapolations about future trends and tendencies

• Understand and use methods of scientific inquiry

• Formulate, test, analyze, and evaluate experiments

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The Olympia Schools is committed to a math/science program that supports each student in reaching her/his highest potential while building a strong foundation of skills and a confidence in working with numbers, graphs, charts, and all forms and varieties of visual data. In order to achieve this, we subscribe to the following principles:

  1. Students have a better chance of acquiring targeted skills if varied modes of classroom methods are used, ranging from being taught to discovering, individual to group work, traditional tests to project/lab work, kinesthetic to visual to auditory.
  2. Concepts need to be presented in relevant, “real world,” and interesting context if all students are to be engaged. Concepts also need to be driven by the students from their own lives and observation.
  3. Students are going to acquire core reasoning and problem solving skills at different rates. Pace is not necessarily a reflection of intelligence. What is most important is not material marginally covered but mastery of skills and ability to apply those skills in varied ways.
  4. Technology provides new ways of 1) broadening the learning approaches accessible to students, 2) more effectively assessing mastery for each student, and 3) providing a creative and authentic way of expressing their knowledge to a wider audience.
  5. There are varied paths for students to achieve success in math, culminating in upper level courses that play to different strengths and range from calculus to statistics to finance to solving a wide range of discrete problems.
  6. There are ways to make most any math skill or concept real, interesting, and fun to almost every student by stepping out of the “textbook” and into compelling situations both in the real and virtual worlds.

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Program Goals Envision Math--1st through 6th grade program:

  • Envision a math program that meets the varied needs of students and teachers without undermining the strength of its curriculum. enVisionMATH addresses the wide range of educational issues that teachers face and provides curriculum to meet these needs that is truly successful.Conceptual Understanding
  • Envision a math program where pictures do the talking. enVisionMATH is the first math program that develops math concepts through interactive and visual learning.Problem Solving
  • Envision a math program where problem solving is no problem. enVisionMATH’s Bar Diagrams help students see the math.Understanding by Design
  • Envision a math program that is planned and designed for understanding. Dr. Grant Wiggins’ concept of Understanding by Design ensures that you deliberately target your students’ understanding.Meeting Individual Needs
  • Envision a math program where every child counts. Data-driven differentiated instruction takes the guess work out of helping students achieve.Program Organization
  • Envision a math program where instruction is organized the way you teach…The only math program that provides everything you need in one place with 20 focused Topic Teacher Editions color-coded by math strand.

Saxon Math—7th through 12th grade program: No matter how well students initially learn a concept, if they are not able to retain their learning, connect it to other concepts, and apply it in problem-solving situations, they have not reached mastery. Saxon Math is designed to support the long-term mastery and applications that will make a difference during testing and in students’ future education and careers. According to the pedagogy incremental concepts are taught in small, approachable progressions. Distributed increments are spread throughout the year, building in complexity so that by the end of the year, students have reached deep understanding and fluency. Cumulative practice and assessments include concepts from the most recent lessons as well as from earlier in the year, ensuring students retain all concepts and can make connections between them.

Frameworks, Skills, and Resources Common Core Curriculum Framework Envision Math Program Saxon Math Program STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) National Council of Teachers of Mathematics National Council of Teachers of Science Partnership For 21st Century Skills Edutopia – Project-based learning