Math at Rancho Solano

August 28, 2017

Since the beginning of formal education, scholars have debated on the proper way to teach mathematics.  Some believed that repetition and developing skills was the most important way to develop math fluency.  Others believed that math was best taught through problem solving and application-based problems.  This debate continues today in education.  Here at Rancho Solano, we feel we have a strong balance between the two approaches.  From the beginning of Pre-K when students learn number recognition and counting principles all the way through the I.B. (International Baccalaureate) Mathematics courses where those same principles are applied in complex problem solving situations, students are always challenged to not only learn the skills needed, but to know when and how to apply them. 

A great analogy is that of a toolbox.  A person can have a toolbox full of expensive tools, but if he/she doesn’t know when or how to use them, then those tools are ineffective.  The tools represent the math skills that our students learn on a day-to-day basis and learning how to use those tools is like the application and problem-solving process. Our job as math teachers is to not only teach the students how each tool works, but to demonstrate to them when it’s appropriate to use those tools. 

After a thorough adoption process, we feel that our new math curriculum materials at each level are a perfect fit for what we do here at Rancho Solano.  They provide not only a solid foundation in skills development, but also the opportunity to have conversations about math among peers and to develop problem solving skills through investigations and performance tasks. 

The feedback so far has been very positive from teachers, parents, and students.  We are very proud of our math program here at Rancho Solano.  The significant investment on resources and curriculum materials makes a strong statement as to how committed we are to providing the best education in the Valley.  Thank you for trusting us to help mold the future leaders of our world into creative problem solvers.  

Mr. Ryan McLeod
Upper School Math Instructor
Math Department Chair

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