The Core-Plus Mathematics curriculum was designed by a development team that possesses content expertise and a shared understanding of research-based principles for teaching and learning. Development of this curriculum required imaginative and careful creation of plans and materials reflecting several key areas: major content strands, each organized in a sequence of focused and coherent units, featuring mathematical modeling and emphasizing connections among strands; problem contexts that students can relate to; strategic use of technology tools; and opportunities for assessment in each phase of instruction.
Beth Ritsema, Author and Professional Development Coordinator for Core-Plus Mathematics, discusses how the Core-Plus integrated pathway meets the requirements of the Common Core standards.
Courses 1-3 are organized in coherent, connected units focusing on the development of important mathematics drawn from 4 strands:
Algebra and Functions develops student ability to recognize, represent, and solve problems involving relations among quantitative variables among quantitative variables.
Geometry and Trigonometry focuses on developing visual thinking and the ability to construct, reason with, interpret, and apply mathematical models of patterns in visual and physical contexts.
Statistics and Probability develops student ability to analyze data intelligently, to recognize and measure variation, and understand the patterns that underlie probabilistic situations.
Discrete Mathematical Modeling develops student ability to model and solve problems using recursion, matrices, vertex-edge graphs, and systematic counting methods (combinatorics).
Consistent with CCSS principles, this problem-based curriculum emphasizes mathematical modeling and is designed so that students engage in and experience mathematics to make sense of data and problems that arise in multiple contexts.
The Core-Plus Mathematics CCSS Edition incorporates the use of technology using online resources, including eBooks for both the teacher and student, online assessment tools, and CPMP-Tools® software, including a spreadsheet, a CAS and dynamic geometry, data analysis, and discrete mathematics tools to support and reinforce classroom instruction and student learning.
Differences in student performance and interest can be addressed by the depth and level of abstraction to which core topics are pursued, by the difficulty level of applications, by providing opportunities for students to choose some homework tasks and projects and pose their own problems.
Comprehensive assessment through both curriculum-embedded formative assessment and summative assessment tasks and the use of McGraw-Hill Education’s eAssessment platform enables teachers to make immediate and informed instructional decisions. Easy to use, flexible, and accessible from anywhere, eAssessment also features sets of tasks aligned to the new Common Core State Standards.
Instructional materials promote active learning and teaching centered around collaborative investigations of rich problem situations, followed by whole-class summarizing activities. Students are actively engaged in exploring, conjecturing, verifying, generalizing, applying, proving, evaluating, and communicating their mathematical ideas.