The math program at Synapse inspires students to develop a deep understanding of and genuine appreciation for mathematics. The math program is a hybrid between a project based and problem based approach, providing students with a rich and beautiful experience of mathematics that emphasizes cross-curricular connections, and challenges students to collaborate in constructing their own mathematical knowledge.
Synapse Math Program Highlights
- Low floor, high ceiling mathematical tasks ensure all students are able to find appropriate level of challenge.
- Rich investigations, from both applied and pure mathematics, provide students with the opportunity to apply their imagination, creativity, collaboration and experience to the thrill of mathematical discovery.
- Students develop authentic problem solving skills, including learning to pose their own problems, identifying relevant information, and making reasonable assumptions and estimation.
- Understanding is developed by moving from concrete and visual representations towards more abstract models.
- Computational fluency is developed through puzzles, games and mathematical investigations that build number sense and deep conceptual understanding while deemphasizing speed and memorization.
Lower School Math Program Overview
In this long block, students engage with mathematics in a variety of ways, through real world and mathematical investigations and cross-curricular projects.
Math Skills Time
Students develop skills through rich tasks that encourage a deep understanding through concrete, visual and abstract representations. The concepts covered in skills time parallel the concepts being explored in HEARTS Math, allowing students to practice skills related to their project work.
Math Talks (Number Talks, Dot Patterns, Counting Circles, etc)
Teachers lead students in routine math talks, where they ask students to be flexible with numbers, explain their thinking, consider multiple perspectives and respond to the thinking of others.
Math Centers (Choice Math Practice)
These are whole class sessions where students are provided with a various options for math practice. Every child has access to all levels of challenges and teachers provide assistance as needed.
These are 30 minute sessions on Fridays where students have choice of different topics. Math circle topics have included Hyperdimensional Geometry, Computational Paper Folding, Mathematical Art, Sports Statistics, Strategy Games, Mathematical Puzzles and more.