The Arithmetic Ladder

Arithmetic and Common Core

Many parents have experienced frustration with common core.  The math looks ‘new’ and they do not know how to help their children with homework.  Math is not new.  Common Core was an initiative to teach the fundamental principals of arithmetic.  In understanding ‘how numbers work’ students generally have and easier time transitioning to Algebra.  But trying to teach these principals came at the cost of learning math facts and how to complete math problems neatly and accurately.  Math facts and accuracy are essential skills in mathematics education.  When a college student is completing a calculus problem two pages long, accuracy is the difference between passing and failing. Accuracy and math facts matter.

This is not to say concepts are unimportant, not at all.  But math concepts deepen over time, and at differing rates for different learners.  For a student to remain on track, they need to progress up the arithmetic ladder.  The arithmetic ladder is the bare bones essentials to keep moving forward.   The Studia Nova arithmetic ladder is shown below.  We do much more than the ladder in our math classes, developing math concepts and applying math to real life problems.  However, we ensure that no student lacks any of the critical steps along the way.