By Alison Hodgkin, Math Specialist
When enrolling a student at Wasatch Charter School, many parents are probably not considering how math will look for their child. Why would you when there are many other offerings so unique to our school community, and when math sounds like….well, just math. But with Waldorf inspiration, students engage with math in different ways, from building to singing to creating.
Take for instance a main lesson exploration into measurement for third graders. Through stories and art, students come to the conclusions that standards in measurement are important, and put to use their own precise and careful craftsmanship to create rulers. With hand-crafted tools in hand, students measure and mark dimensions while building and decorating their Sukkot hut; their ruler’s accuracy is put to the test, and their understanding of measurement, space, and reliability develops. Working with precision is an essential standard for mathematicians, and one our students are developing through hands-on practice.
Or peek more closely at 1st grade as they count and sing around the circle, first by ones forward and backward, but then by fives and tens to develop a budding sense of multiplicative relationships and numeric patterns. Or stop by 6th grade as they consider in small groups why fraction division works the way it does using models, story contexts, pictures, and rich language.
At WCS, math lives beyond just numbers and problem sets. Math involves genuine problem-solving and curiosity, exists alongside song and play, and is accompanied by visuals and models daily in classrooms throughout the building. Math, taught so engagingly, can be a reason to be excited about attending WCS.