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How Rhoades meets the needs of high ability math students

There are five cognitive processes that students must engage in order to understand mathematical concepts:  problem solving, reasoning and proof, communication, connections and representations. Students who are cognitively advanced in mathematics tend to quickly grasp new material and often understand concepts without direct instruction, due to an intuitive awareness of mathematical functions and principles. These divergent math thinkers have an innate sense of number and are interested in much more than the computational aspects of mathematics; they seek opportunities to delve deeper into complex, big-picture mathematical thinking and open-ended problem solving. Rhoades School students who demonstrate advanced mathematical skills are afforded differentiated instruction matched to their abilities, not their grade level class placement. In addition to providing students with ability-based group instruction, our faculty integrate supplemental curriculum to enrich far beyond the textbook. As a result, Rhoades students have numerous opportunities to cultivate higher order thinking skills while gaining automaticity of math facts and mastering important core concepts. Our teachers create dynamic learning situations that enable students to actively engage in mathematics and to directly apply mathematical concepts to real-world topics and their coursework in science, technology, design and engineering. At Rhoades, the pace, depth and breadth of students’ mathematics instruction reflects their cognitive abilities; we offer students the opportunity to study Pre-algebra, Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2, Pre-calculus and AP Calculus AB in our K-8 school setting.

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