Mathematics is an integral part of many activities in our daily lives, including making sense of the world around us and making decisions for ourselves. Calculations, measurements, interpretation, analysis and synthesis of information all revolve around the level of understanding in mathematics. Therefore, it is essential that one develops the mind to think logically, abstractly, critically and creatively. These are the 21st competencies that the Ministry of Learning seeks to imbue in our students.
Mathematics is hierarchical in nature. Harder, tougher concepts are built upon foundational ones in a spiral. Therefore, skills development is layered, starting with elementary methods at the lower primary level upwards towards abstract strategies applied at the upper primary level and beyond. The syllabus assumes no formal pre-requisites of mathematics when a student joins the Ministry of Learning at Primary 1. However, basic pre-numeracy skills such as matching, sorting and comparing are pre-requisites for a student to begin learning mathematics here.
Approaches & Techniques Applied
Our teachers take into consideration the REM phases when they conduct their lessons (ensuring students are equipped with the pre-requisites and are ready to learn, providing manipulatives and activities to engage and motivate, and equipping students with enough practices to ensure mastery of concepts). Effective questioning techniques (Bloom’s taxonomy), error analysis, CPA (concretepictorial-abstract) approach to content mastery and Polya’s approach to Problem Solving are applied in the classroom. Timely feedback is also given to close learning gaps, and opportunities created for them to reflect on their learning, make connections between mathematical ideas, and build confidence as they forge a deeper understanding of mathematics.
The Ministry of Learning’s mathematics framework reflects the Ministry of Education’s mathematics curriculum. The central focus being problem solving, thus setting the direction for the learning of mathematics at all levels.