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Mathematics

The mathematics department works to deepen each student’s understanding of the skills, the concepts, and the habits of mind that are the keys to the mastery of mathematics. Through problem solving and investigation, students come to appreciate the beauty and power of pure and applied mathematics, and they more fully understand the connections between mathematics and other disciplines.

The mathematics department provides interesting and appropriately challenging problems, so that all students may explore and analyze data, and consider a variety of solutions to any one problem. Effective communication—both verbal and written—is central: Students learn to speak and write the language of mathematics in a student-centered environment where collaboration is both encouraged and expected. We make every effort to help students feel confident in their ability to do mathematics, so when faced with a novel problems, students will attack it with skill, courage, interest, enthusiasm, and the belief that they have the intellectual and technological resources that will aid in the solution.

Whenever possible, we encourage students to consider analytical, numerical, and graphical solutions to a problem, and the calculator and computer are instrumental in the different analyses. We emphasize process, and students recognized that stating the final answer to a problem is never sufficient. Rather, a well organized, clearly articulated written or verbal explanation of that solution is important in helping the student effectively communicate the reasoning and the processes involved.

The mathematics teachers at Milton Academy work collaboratively, and the materials we develop allow us to determine the nature and directions of course work. We think and talk about what we are teaching, so the curriculum is responsive, efficient, customized, and open-ended. Many of the problems we use are set in meaningful contexts, and we hope that students will realize the value and importance of mathematics in their lives.

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