Math is one of the most objective fields of study. There is great beauty in its inherent predictability. A proficient student can be confident in his or her knowledge independent of a book, a guide or a teacher. This independence can be invaluable in the development of a child's self-confidence and self-esteem, which are, in themselves, the bedrock of all learning. At the same time, even while most forms of knowledge are cumulative in nature, math is perhaps the most unforgiving since it is often impossible to make sense of a concept if more basic, prior concepts are not well understood. Children with weak foundations would face an increasingly daunting task when they approach more advanced topics.
A good math education should be individualized and seek to build the proficiency of a student with care and sensitivity. There is compelling evidence that children can make meaningful progress in understanding math only if they construct it for themselves, often through a hierarchical process of assimilation and accommodation. With this understanding in mind, at Sankalpa Academy, we rely on individualized guidance and focus more on the foundations and processes than on procedures. In fact, in many cases, we seek to develop mathematical understanding in children through exploration and experimentation. And, beyond these approaches, we rely on the Socratic method to help children construct their own learning.
Each student will start at his or her competency level and progress independently along the continuum, applying knowledge to deepen understanding of concepts and themes. Students will be learning through a variety of formats, including games, exploratory learning as well as hands on projects.
Our math curriculum will foster real-world problem-solving skills and build foundational skills by tying projects into our thematic areas. We will use a variety of strategies as we work our way through such concepts as number sense, basic computations, fractions, money, time, measurement, probability, and patterns. With individualized guidance, we expect that most students would be about 1 to 2 grade levels ahead in math, and also achieve a deeper understanding of its foundations at the same time..