At the last Carmel Clay School Board meeting on March 28, the school district approved new secondary school mathematics textbooks for use next school year. According to school board president Tricia Hackett, the new books will complement the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), which were adopted by Indiana last August.
“The CCSS represent a set of expectations for student knowledge and skills that high school graduates need to succeed in college and careers. The standards are aligned with college and work expectations, include rigorous content and application of knowledge through higher order skills,” Hackett said.
According to Hackett, the mathematics curriculum will now focus more on mathematical practices—in other words, problem solving, real world applications, interpreting and applying data, reasoning with mathematical arguments and other critical thinking skills.
Senior Kacie Piedmonte, who is currently taking AP Statistics, said that this new mathematical approach will be helpful for students, especially those who don’t enjoy math by itself. She said the skills she learned in AP Statistics will help in her desired future career as a physician assistant, a job that includes looking at and interpreting medical data. The new curriculum will focus on such real world applications, beyond simply meeting conceptual standards.
“A lot of times, kids feel that math is unimportant and not applicable,” Piedmonte said. “(Focusing on real applications) can make them appreciate it more, like it more and try harder. They might like math better if they see it applies to real life and is not pointless. There’s an explanation, not just random math.” By Rebecca Xu <firstname.lastname@example.org>