Math in Focus (MIF) is based on the Singapore math framework, which was one of the 15 national curriculum examined for the creation of the Common Core standards for mathematics.
MIF takes the approach of the Concrete - Pictorial - Abstract learning progression.
- Concrete learning happens through hands-on activities with manipulatives such as counters, coins, number lines, or base-ten blocks.
- Pictorial learning uses pictures, drawings, or other forms that illustrate the concept with something more than abstract numbers.
- Abstract is the more familiar way most math problems are taught and practiced with numbers and symbols.
MIF promotes a deeper understanding of numbers and math concepts, using visual and problem-solving based strategies to help students bridge the concrete and the abstract. There will be fewer topics taught throughout the year, but they will be taught for mastery making frequent yearly reviews unnecessary. The program broadens student thinking skills and builds math success through visualization strategies including model drawing, number bond models, and bar modeling. Communication skills will be built through math talk, in which students discuss their thinking and reflect on what they are learning.
At left are specific resources for fourth and fifth grade. Videos help parents to understand what is being taught and how they can help at home.