Saxon Math Differentiates Instruction to Ensure Success for All Students
Just as each room in a house on the market is different and
requires customized attention while preparing the home for
its sale, each student in a mathematics classroom is different.
A one-size-fi ts-all approach is unrealistic and ineffective.
The National Center on Assessing the General Curriculum
defi nes this customized instruction as follows: “To differentiate
instruction is to recognize students varying background
knowledge, readiness, language, preferences in learning,
interests, and to react responsively” (p. 2). The goal of this
paper is to demonstrate how the Saxon Math curriculum
differentiates instruction to provide universal access. The
real estate analogy will serve as a platform to explain Saxon
Math’s approach. The different rooms in a home will be used
to represent students with an assortment of learning needs.
Motivating Students: Saxon Math Provides Students a Path to Results
Exercise is hard work. Many people find it difficult to follow
through with the resolution to attain better health through
physical exercise. Even knowing the benefi ts of exercise,
far too many Americans do not possess the motivation
necessary to consistently engage in activities that exercise
their hearts, lungs, or muscles. In a similar manner, math is
hard work. In far too many American classrooms, students do
not possess suffi cient motivation to consistently engage in
activities that bring about mathematical literacy and develop
the concepts and knowledge needed for success at the next
level of education or in the workforce. The goal of this paper
is to incorporate the parallels between exercise and math
education to highlight Saxon Math’s unique approach to
Problem Solving in Saxon Math
Saxon Math provides a balanced math curriculum that
emphasizes the importance of problem solving in our modern,
global, and technological age. Today’s society is facing energy,
political, social, environmental, and economic struggles that
rival those of any prior generation. The unnamed challenges
of tomorrow will likely be similar in magnitude but different in
kind. A mathematically literate populace is needed to work
past our current struggles and to formulate the solutions for
the problems of tomorrow. Will people be prepared by today’s
math instruction to handle these challenges? Saxon Math can
play a key role in preparing the next generation for the task of
solving the difficult problems that lie ahead.
Saxon Math English Language Learners
Schools in the United States continue to become more ethnically and linguistically diverse every year. As a result, English Language Learners (ELL) represent the fastest growing subset of the K-12 student population. Unfortunately, these students continue to fall behind and struggle in school–English Language Learners drop out at a higher rate, and the achievement gap between these students and English speaking students on state and national assessments continues to grow. Not only do EL students need to meet the same high academic standards as their English speaking peers, but they also must learn, comprehend, and apply the academic English needed to be successful in today's society. Saxon Math provides the research-based strategies needed to address the needs of students with limited English proficiency, and ensures that all students have the opportunity to learn and receive the education they deserve.
Saxon Math Response to the
Reprinted with permission from Curriculum Focal Points for Prekindergarten through Grade 8 Mathematics: A Quest for Coherence, copyright 2006 by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. All rights reserved.
The Curriculum Focal Points identify key mathematical ideas for these grades. They are not discrete topics or a checklist to be mastered; rather, they provide a framework for the majority of instruction at a particular grade level and the foundation for future mathematics study. The complete document may be viewed at www.nctm.org/focalpoints
Saxon Math is a unique program. It doesn't look like other math programs yet it is this difference that allows Saxon Math to successfully respond to the expected and unexpected needs of classrooms across the nation. Saxon Math continues to be the dependable leader in reaching all levels of learners and to generate positive results that teachers and administrators work so hard to achieve.
The steadfastness of math programs will be an important consideration as schools determine which curriculum best supports the principles set forth in the Response To Intervention (RTI) for math. The recommendations of RTI suggest that schools consider modifications to their programs with a focus on three tiers of instruction.
To view the full document, download the PDF.
Saxon Math is built on distributed and incremental instruction- a pedagogy that sets students up for success. Children at every level of development have multiple opportunities throughout the year to practice, process, master and apply concepts. Saxon gives every student the time they need to reach conceptual understanding. In addition, the assessment in the program is frequent and cumulative, helping students achieve the goal of long-term retention.
To view the full document, download the PDF.