The mathematics department upholds Breck’s Mission and Values by preparing our students to meet the mathematical demands of college, professional, and civic life; by providing a variety of courses and accommodations to address the diverse talents and interests of our students; and by pursuing appropriate opportunities to engage the community and to foster a sense of social responsibility.
We are guided by these principles:
- Conceptual understanding supports procedural facility, and procedural facility empowers students to apply their understanding to solve problems. Good mathematics teaching balances and interconnects the procedural and conceptual realms.
- Curriculum and instruction must be programmatically coherent, evidence-based, and developmentally appropriate for students at all levels.
- An academically and developmentally diverse student body requires a variety of courses, instructional strategies, and supports. A curriculum should offer a number of courses and pathways to engage, challenge, and empower students.
- Excellent teaching instills confidence, resilience, independence, and flexibility. Students should develop the disposition and skills to estimate outcomes, catch errors, and assess the reasonableness of results. Students should appreciate the aesthetic and practical value of mathematics, its connections to other disciplines, its historical and cultural foundations, and its place in their own lives.
- “Rigor” in mathematics means that claims are supported by sound reasoning, effectively communicated. While appropriate challenge is desirable, it is distinct from rigor as a curricular element.
- Students thrive in an environment that acknowledges and values their full identities and that encourages and supports them all.
- Educational technology should inform and enhance the teaching, learning, and doing of mathematics. Students should learn to make sound judgments about how and when to use a given resource.