Math is an integral part of the MCS curricula and our mission. At the heart of it is our goal to develop competent and confident mathematical thinkers. Students do not just memorize math facts and algorithms, they develop profound understandings of mathematical concepts and skills. Math is integrated into daily classroom life and life at the Farm. The math MCS students do is meaningful, engaging, and applicable to real life.
Our LS math program includes a few components - conceptual understanding, problem-solving, procedural knowledge, and computational fluency.
Strategy instruction and the use of number talk builds computational fluency by improving mathematical accuracy, efficiency, and flexibility. Children learn different math strategies at each grade level, depending on their skills, which showcases the understanding that children’s mathematical thinking develops on a continuum.
MCS teachers ask students, How do you know? What strategy did you use? How will you record your thinking? They support students with a variety of tools (ex: counters, 10s rods, and other math manipulatives) and models (ex: numbers lines, 10s frames, arrays). Teachers ask open ended math questions that allow for differentiation. There are multiple entry points so that students with different learning styles and different skill levels can all access learning.
While our students are learning math they are also developing skills that will serve them in other areas as well - developing a growth mindset - being a flexible thinker - having efficient and effective problem-solving skills - these life skills extend beyond.
Throughout the year, the 4-5s use a variety of methods to solidify and reinforce their math skills. Charts and graphs are used to record survey questions such as: What floor do you live on? How many people are in your family? What transportation do you use to come to school?  Additionally, written math questions about daily attendance and counting the name sticks, give students an early introduction to the concepts and written symbols of addition and subtraction and help to solidify their one-to-one correspondence. The 4-5s practice how to write these math questions on the whiteboard each day. Pattern blocks and the monthly calendar are used to work on patterns, sequencing, and shapes. Students explore geometric concepts through work with manipulative materials, shape searches, and building in the block area. Learning how to measure objects in the classroom with unit blocks and Unifix cubes has become an integral part of number recognition and counting.
5-6s are immersed in mathematical processes throughout the day, whether during morning meeting times, a specific math lesson, or math centers. Everyday math examples are predicting the next pattern square on the calendar, or exploring measurement by comparing their height to the height of a block building. 5-6s key skills include: one-to-one correspondence, identifying numerals through 20, rote counting through 100, sorting and classifying materials, and identifying, creating, and extending patterns. The 5-6s are also refining their number sense (the patterns and relationships between numbers), which lays the foundation for formal addition and subtraction. Continued work with unit blocks is also an integral part of the math curriculum as students experiment with shape, space, beginning fraction work, measurement, depth, height, and the concept of more than/less than.
The 6-7s study of mathematics has three primary goals: to develop a strong understanding of math concepts, to develop mathematical skills, and to apply these concepts and skills to real-life situations. Students are asked to use their math skills while conducting their attendance job, studying the neighborhood, running a school post office, setting up snack, and making and interpreting graphs. During math periods students practice how to be problem-solvers, how to explain the methods they have used, and how to choose the most efficient method for solving a problem. A large portion of the 6-7s’ year is spent concentrating on the concepts of addition and subtraction, solidifying their facts to 20 for instant recall, and recognizing “doubles facts.” The 6-7s investigate many other mathematical topics including patterns, place value, estimation, money math, and geometry.
The 7-8s math program further develops the children’s abstract thinking, logical reasoning, pattern recognition, and problem-solving skills. Opportunities are provided to help students see and experience how math is used in everyday life and to communicate with others about their work. The 7-8s mathematics curriculum will touch on solidifying number facts, exploring place value of 2- and 3-digit numbers and how it can be used to support addition and subtraction, and examining properties and relationships of geometric shapes. 7-8s apply measurement skills and tell time on both a digital and analog clock. The 7-8s also collect data through surveys while creating and analyzing the information on simple graphs. Through games, discussion, and guided exploration with concrete models students are expected to develop, discuss, and apply a range of accurate and systematic methods to add and subtract multi-digit whole numbers. 
In the 8-9s math program, many new concepts are introduced. Students are asked to think conceptually about the numbers and problems before deciding on a strategy. They are tasked with choosing efficient and effective strategies in their computation. 8-9s discuss their mathematical thinking and share their problem-solving skills in small and whole groups. The 8-9s work through a thorough review of place value and learn a plethora of addition and subtraction strategies including the standard algorithm to solve multi-digit addition and subtraction problems. The 8-9s sharpen their money math skills, including making change and calculating the values of bills and coins, in preparation for running La Tienda. La Tienda, the school store, provides a hands-on learning experience during which students apply their knowledge of money math, place value, addition, and subtraction. The 8-9s also build a foundational understanding of multiplication and division. This begins with discussing multiplication and division in terms of equal groups. From there, students build their fluency and problem-solving strategies through the use of manipulatives, picture problems, array work, games, and memorization. Across all units of the math curriculum, students practice using math-specific language to explain their strategies verbally, and also show their thinking using numbers, pictures, words, and diagrams.  
The 9-10s math curriculum builds on the skills and concepts introduced in previous years. The year begins with a multiplication study through which the 9-10s learn new concepts and vocabulary, including factors and multiples, as well as prime, composite, and square numbers. 9-10s then review triple digit addition and subtraction, strengthening their computation skills and understanding of place value. The goals of the division unit are to build the 9-10s’ abilities to solve division equations, identify different types of division problems, and decide what to do with the remainders depending on the context of the problem. The focus is not only on computation and problem-solving skills but also on the ability to explain one’s thinking. Regular challenge problems extend the classwork and encourage the 9-10s to approach math work from multiple angles.
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