Students in Plymouth begin their mathematical journey via the Everyday Math curriculum starting with kindergarten. Everyday Mathematics is a common core, research-based, and field-tested curriculum that focuses on developing children’s understandings and skills in ways that produce lifelong mathematical power. The Everyday Mathematics curriculum emphasizes the use of concrete, real-life examples; repeated exposures to mathematical concepts and skills; frequent practice of basic computation skills; and the use of multiple methods and problem-solving strategies to foster true proficiency and accommodate different learning styles.
Each grade of the Everyday Mathematics curriculum is carefully designed to build and expand upon a student’s mathematical proficiency and understanding, culminating in the 5th grade. Our goal is to build a strong foundation for powerful mathematical thinkers as the students make the transition to their respective middle school.
The Big Ideas Math program is a research-based curriculum providing a rigorous, focused, and coherent curriculum and foundation for all middle school math students. This program follows a balanced instructional approach and balances conceptual understanding with procedural fluency. Big Ideas Math picks up where Everyday Math leaves off; providing our middle school students with a comprehensive mathematics education of grade-level skills as well as an introduction to higher-level algebraic thinking.
Progress monitoring takes place at the middle school as well. Star Math is a benchmark diagnostic test administered 4 times a year for all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students. The Star Math data carries over year to year for all students in the district. Star Math is nationally normed to provide helpful information/implications for common core and state testing performance. The diagnostic reports also help to identify any potential gaps or weaknesses in grade-level math curriculum.
Opportunities for program acceleration exist at both the middle and high school level. With approval, students at the high school may double-up on math courses during the school year. Middle and high school students are provided with opportunities to engage in virtual course work in an effort to enter the Advanced Placement track as a junior or senior in high school. New additions to the course offerings at the high school level include Computer Science AP and AP Calculus BC. Plymouth has been named to the College Board’s Advanced Placement (AP) District Honor Roll several times for its commitment to student AP access and performance in AP courses.
Our district is committed to providing our teachers and students with the resources necessary to succeed in all levels of the mathematics curriculum. To date, we employ two math coaches that each cover four of our eight elementary schools and one math specialist at each of our two middle schools. Math coaches work exclusively with teachers and administrators to help maintain appropriate and rigorous math instruction. Math specialists see students as well as help with professional development and data collection to inform classroom instruction. Each of our two high schools has a mathematics department head that both teaches and oversees the instruction and assessment of the high school mathematics curriculum.
Please feel free to contact me at any time with questions regarding the Plymouth Publc Schools mathematics programming!