Introduction
The Diocese of Trenton Mathematics Curriculum Guidelines is the culmination of work developed over a period of one to two years by the Diocesan Mathematics Curriculum Committee.
The document, Diocese of Trenton Mathematcs Curriculum Guidelines is based on the investigation and research of numerous documents:
In 1989, mathematicians projected the following concepts to be developed for the 21st century:
“Today's students will live and work in the twenty-first century, in an era dominated by computers, by world-wide communication, and by a global economy. Jobs that contribute to this economy will require workers who are prepared to absorb new ideas, to perceive patterns, and to solve unconventional problems.
Mathematics is the key to opportunity for these jobs. Through mathematics, we learn to make sense of things around us. As technology has mathematicized the workplace, and as statistics has permeated the arena of public policy debate, the mathematical sciences have moved from being a requirement only for future scientists to being an essential ingredient in the education of all Americans.” [“Teaching Mathematics for Tomorrow’s World”, Lynn Arthur Steen, St. Olaf College, Educational Leadership, 47:1 (September 1989) 18-22.]
In an article written by the president of the NCTM in 2010, he stated the following:
“To instill positive and productive attitudes toward mathematics lies within our own hands—in our teaching. No standards on earth—be they state or national—no testing or assessment procedures, no Race to the Top or mandates from above can make as much of a difference as we can every day through our own instructional practices.” [It’s Time to Stamp Out the Phrase “I’m Bad at Math” by NCTM President J. Michael Shaughnessy, NCTM Summing Up, October 2010]
Developing challenging, ambitious expectations for student learning in mathematics is imperative if we are to prepare students to compete in a global economy in the 21 st Century. Preparing students and teachers in the 21 st century demands that all students and teachers become immersed in the concepts of mathematics as well as connecting mathematics concepts to literacy in language, economics, communication and new technology as it emerges.
In addition to the Core Content Standards in Mathematics, contained within this document, there is also a set of Mathematical Practice Standards to incorporate the content standards and apply them to other disciplines and real life applications. These Mathematical Practice Standards are summarized as follows from the Common Core Mathematical Standards, 2010.
1. Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
2. Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
3. Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.
4. Model with mathematics.
5. Use appropriate tools strategically.
6. Attend to precision.
7. Look for and make use of structure.
8. Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.
The Standards of Mathematical Practice indicate ways in which students ought to engage with the subject matter as they grow in mathematical maturity and expertise throughout their formative years. Educators should attend to the need of connecting mathematical practice with mathematical content. It is imperative that mathematical practice be developed so that students will not rely too heavily on procedural methods only. Without a flexible base from which to work students may not be able to develop alternate methods of solution or accept a comparable argument developed by others.
Diocesan Curriculum Goals in the Teaching of Mathematics are the following:
Students will: