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The Beauty of Math: A Peek Inside a Math Classroom at Keys School Manila

By Lily Racoma

“Math gives us hope that every problem has a solution.”

Mathematics is one of the most important subjects in schools, because it exercises people’s minds and it can help us think logically and critically. At Keys School Manila, we follow the Singapore Math method, utilizing the CPA (Concrete-Pictorial-Abstract) approach. Keys students get the opportunity to communicate with their classmates as well as experience hands-on and engaging activities. In this article, we will go through on how Mathematics is appreciated inside of the Keys classrooms. 

At the start of every Math session, we explore with an Anchor Task, or a high-ceiling and low floor “Problem of the Day”, that will give students a hint on what they will be learning. Anchor Tasks aim to operate their mindsets, and collaborate with their fellow peers as they try to problem solve the answer to the Anchor Task with one another. The benefit of Anchor Tasks before the explanation of the actual lesson, is that students will be able to activate their prior information, and that they get to make and try out different possible strategies, manipulatives, and use other tools when faced with a challenging and new topic. 

Following the Anchor Task, is the discussion of answers to the Problem of the Day and how they were able to find possible solutions, observe, and progress through this activity. This is usually led by the students while the teacher jots down their strategies, solutions, and the important details on the whiteboard to feature more efficient strategies, and to solidify the concept. If the students still need assistance, or to make sure that they’ve understood the topic clearly, up next is guided practice, where the teacher gives out math equations for the students to solve with the teacher’s guidance, and this is done with the whole class. Lastly, the students accomplish their independent work, as they will be able to apply what they have learned by answering a workbook page, or writing down in their math journals.

Here in Keys, we consider that the math routine is one of the advantages in the Math curriculum, and we believe that Math is unique and special by the whole community. Teacher Pamela Bergado, a Grade 5-6 Math Teacher and the Math Coordinator for the Upper Primary, states that; “Math in Keys is unique because it is taught in a way that will help students see the importance and significance of life in their everyday lives.” As I have said, Mathematics is one of the most important subjects in schools, because it exercises people’s minds and it can help us think logically and critically. So I encourage everyone to incorporate math into their everyday routines and to also build up their love for math, not just in school, but forever. 

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