Working Mathematically Curriculum Scaffold

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The big idea is that:
All students can learn to work like a mathematician.


There are several overlapping dimensions to this idea:
  • Mathematicians learning to count.
  • Mathematicians learning to reason.
  • Mathematicians learning to measure.
  • Mathematicians learning to make connections.
  • Mathematicians learning about shape and space.
  • Mathematicians learning to predict random events.
  • Mathematicians learning to communicate with others.


To assist in the exploration of these dimensions we arbitrarily use structures to guide our planning. One successful example of a structure is Maths With Attitude:
  • Number & Computation
  • Pattern & Algebra
  • Space & Logic
  • Chance & Measurement
  • Teacher team selection from local best practice
Another structural guide (not necessarily as successful) is a sequence of text book chapters.


Within any planning structure:
  • We build units to draw focus to particular aspects of the dimensions.
  • Often a unit includes aspects of several dimensions.
  • Units bring best teaching practice into coalition with content and context.
  • Therefore, to generate purpose and interest within any unit we choose problems to explore, and pedagogy to present them, because interesting problems are the starting point for the work of all mathematicians.
  • Doing so begs the question: How do mathematicians go about solving problems? which is what kindles yet another experience of learning to work like a mathematician as described by the one page statement of the Working Mathematically Process.
  • The problems chosen to fuel the units are presented through a balance of:
    • Whole class investigations ... modelling how a mathematician works
    • Tasks ... invitations to work independently as a mathematician
    • Tool/skill practice ... to support learner mathematicians to more effectively tackle other problems

The whole thing is not linear - it's a web.

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