Our mathematics program promotes an enjoyment and enthusiasm for the exploration and learning of mathematics. Mathematics is understood as a tool for describing and analysing the world around us and is applied to problem solving.
In the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP), mathematics is viewed as a vehicle to support inquiry, providing a global language through which we make sense of the world around us. It is intended that students become competent users of the language of mathematics, and can begin to use it as a way of thinking, as opposed to seeing it as a series of facts and equations.
We believe it is important that learners acquire mathematical understanding by constructing their own meaning through ever-increasing levels of abstraction, starting with exploring their own personal experiences, understandings and knowledge. Additionally, it is fundamental to the philosophy of the PYP that, since it is to be used in real-life situations, mathematics needs to be taught in relevant, realistic contexts, rather than by attempting to impart a fixed body of knowledge directly to students. Therefore, wherever possible, mathematics is transdisciplinary, and taught through the relevant, realistic context of the programme of inquiry. Mathematics is taught outside of the programme of inquiry, as a mathematics subject specific unit, when the concepts, knowledge and skills do not support the transdisciplinary nature of the programme of inquiry.
The role of inquiry in mathematics is important, regardless of whether it is being taught inside or outside the programme of inquiry. Differentiation occurs within all aspects of the mathematics program, recognizing that individuals learn in different ways and at different rates.
The mathematics curriculum is organized into five strands:
- data handling
- shape and space
- pattern and function