## Subject Philosophy

Mathematics is a dynamic discipline that prepares students for a world that requires logical thinking and quantitative analysis. Learning is about understanding, and the Mathematics Department engages students and teachers in a shared, inquiry-based learning experience focused on problem-solving. This learning process develops confidence, understanding, imaginative thinking, persistence, resilience, and collaboration. When students discover something through self-motivated learning, their understanding improves compared to being told the solution.

The courses in the Mathematics Department provide students with powerful tools for the mindful processing of information. Students acquire quantitative reasoning skills that prepare them for further study in mathematics and related fields and equip them to make informed decisions and intelligently interpret the world. The department emphasizes modeling, reasoning, communication, connections, and representation as the cornerstones of mathematics. While traditional teaching methods still have their place, the focus has shifted towards student-centered learning, where students take precedence in independent and collaborative problem-solving. Graphing calculators, specifically the TI-NSPIRE CAS, have opened up new possibilities for problem-solving and exploration of mathematical principles.

By aligning with the Common Core Standards and the AP framework, the department ensures students experience the content and process of mathematics, developing essential conceptual understandings and procedures. These standards guide the selection of content, planning of learning opportunities, and designing assessments. Students regularly utilize graphing calculators to enhance their mathematical understanding and problem-solving skills; thus, all students are required to own a TI-NSPIRE CAS calculator.

## Course Selection

The graduation requirement in mathematics is three years of study, with the expectation that incoming students have already completed Pre-Algebra. The Mathematics Department considers the core curriculum to be Algebra, Geometry and Advanced Algebra. Because HKIS is a college preparatory school, students are advised to study mathematics each year of High School. For students desiring a more rigorous mathematical preparation, the department offers courses through AP Statistics, AB and BC Calculus, and Advanced Math Topics for post AP students. Some students, especially those entering HKIS from a school that does not offer any Algebra in 8th Grade, may choose to take two mathematics courses simultaneously. This plan provides capable students with a thorough background in mathematics for all college work while still permitting them to take Advanced Placement courses in the senior year.

Some courses may be taken concurrently:

- Occasionally, exceptional students may take Geometry concurrently with Advanced Algebra.
- PreCalculus may be taken concurrently with Statistics, AP Statistics, and Mathematics of Human Behavior.
- AP Statistics may also be taken concurrently with AP Calculus AB or AP Calculus BC.
- BC Calculus may be taken concurrently with Advanced Topics in Mathematics.

In order to take two mathematics classes concurrently, students must have a B+ or higher in their current mathematics course, consent of their mathematics teacher, and approval of the Mathematics Department head. In order to continue in two concurrent mathematics courses, a B average must be maintained in each.

## Honors Courses

The Mathematics Department designs honors courses to provide a stimulating environment for students, preparing them for further advanced studies in mathematics. Geometry, Advanced Algebra, and Pre-Calculus are offered as honors-level courses, along with AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, and AP Statistics, providing engaging and challenging opportunities for students who love problem-solving and want to apply their critical thinking skills to more advanced applications. Honors courses go beyond the standard curriculum, delving into topics with greater depth and breadth. Students can expect more challenging problems and investigations that require higher levels of reasoning.

Students enrolling in honors courses should exhibit both ability and motivation in mathematics. For those already enrolled in honors courses, maintaining a minimum grade of B is required to continue in the program.

For students currently in an on-level class, enrolling in an honors course is possible with the teacher's recommendation, approval from the Department Head, and a grade of A in their current course.

## The Math/Science Center

The Math/Science Center is a student-run resource for assisting HKIS students with their math or science homework and studies. The Center is staffed each period by student volunteers; anyone who wants assistance can drop in without an appointment during free periods, meeting times or lunches. The Center is a friendly place and an excellent environment to do homework, to get help with a specific exercise, or to discuss concepts from any level math or science class.

## Mapping the Mathematics Program