Our children are not getting the education they need to compete in the 21st century global economy. In our math classes, we teach students of all skill levels the kinds of math missing in school. Our students learn key concepts and techniques, and practice applying them in both abstract and applied situations. If your child is always asking questions in school that his teacher says are “beyond the scope of this class”, these classes are perfect. Our teachers are excited to answer exactly those sorts of questions. Unlike the dry math taught in schools, these classes are fun and energetic, with other students who are eager to learn.

The skills students learn in our classes will prepare them for advanced math in college, and also develop the kind of scientific thinking needed for all kinds of science and engineering classes. Math and mathematical thinking are crucial for all STEM fields, and developing these skills early gives students a competitive edge in both their classes and the real world.

Enrichment, 1st and 2nd grade students. The main concepts, such as place value, recognizing arithmetic operations in object manipulations, basic understanding of fractions, measurement units, spacial awareness, will be adressed through hands-on activities, word problems and games. We are inspired by works of Jane Katz, math education specialist from Moscow, as well as classical Russian math circle topics. We also will be using Singapore math books Level 2 in this class.

Enrichment, 2nd and 3rd grade students. We’ll build on students’ basic understanding of place values to make students comfortable working with large numbers. Understanding of fractions will be reviewed, basic operations with simple fractions will be requred in some word problems. Word problems will require clear understanding of meaning for every arithmetic operation performed in solution. Exposure to geomertry will include hands-on experience with poligons, angles, nets of simple polyhedra. Certain classical math circle problems will be introduced from Martin Gardner collection. Singapore level 3 books will also be used in class (roughly corresponds to grade 4 US math). Some Silver level students choose to participate in Math Kangaroo contest which will be available March 16, 2017 at iBrainGym location, but participation is optional and not a part of the class, where the emphasis is on cooperative approach.

Enrichment, 3rd to 6th grade students. Understanding of place value, decimals and fractions will be reviewed, followed by application in word problems. Word problems will require clear understanding of meaning for every arithmetic operation performed in solution. Geomertry topics will include problems on poligons, angles, nets of simple polyhedra, supported by hands-on material as needed. Certain classical math circle problems will be introduced from Martin Gardner collection. Students will also be exposed to math topics not included in school curriculum, but promoting critical thinking skills, such as numerous logic problem series by Raymond Smullyan, solvable strategy games, counting, graphs.

Competition, 5th-6th grade. This year we are excited to run a class for our more competitive students, 5th-6th grade. Class will include five Div E MOEMS competitions (grades 4th-6th), conducted on the following dates: Nov 22nd, Dec 20th, Jan 17th, Feb 21st, Mar 14th. Weekly meetings will be both enrichment and competition oriented. We will move fast through the material, and students will be expected to complete and hand in homework every week. Topics from Prealgebra curriculum will be introduced. Word problem types will include more advances rate problems, ratios, counting and Venn Diagrams.

New students need to show strong performance on evaluation test and interview to join the class.

Developing Reasoning and Problem Solving Skills Through Math:

Topics below give an idea of general direction I would like to take your child in our exploration of Mathematics. It’s not a quick journey by any means. Our youngest students might just get a taste of some topics on their first year, sometimes in a form of a game or hands-on activity. Returning middle-schoolers, on the other hand, will be challenged to apply the familiar concepts in serious problem solving.

Numeral systems and deeper understanding of base ten notation

Cuneiform and Roman numerals (positional vs non-positional numeral systems)

addition, multiplication and long division puzzles with same digits replaced by same letters

exploding dots (introduction to positional systems other than decimal)

operations in other bases, conversion of numbers between bases

Introduction to number theory – Parity

even vs odd numbers, definition and easy recognition

keeping track of parity in arithmetic operations

keeping track of parity during a process with alterations (what side of the fence is a grasshopper after 315 jumps)

recognizing parity in longer arithmetic expressions

Introduction to number theory – Divisibility

review of divisibility rules by 2, 3, 5, with justification

skip counting on a circle predicting result

prime factorization, LCM and GCF

Arithmetics

order of operations, parenthesis

recognizing order of operations in word problems

regrouping of long sums for efficiency, introduction to finite series

Word problems

review of famous arithmetics problems (heads and legs, birds landing of trees, etc.)

organizing data into table for certain logic problems

working backwards problems

organizing data as a chart (I have twice as much as you:), converting into algebraic expressions

date, time, calendar and age in word problems (organizing what’s given)

word problems on fractions

Coordinate systems

number line: negative numbers (basement floors, piles and pits in a sandbox)

number line: what is there between 0 and 1?

geometry of graph paper

Geometry

counting polygons on a given picture

split a shape into identical parts in all possible ways, construct all possible shapes from parts given

length, perimeter, when does perimeter stay the same

direction and angles, properties of angles of polygons

area of certain polygons, area of a part as a fraction of a whole

Solid Geometry

review of nets of a cube, introducing nets of other polyhedra

building all possible Platonic solids

observations on numbers of vertices, edges, sides of polyhedra

connections of a 3d shape and its 2d images

volume

Various other topics

graphs: relationships of “phone lines”, “islands and bridges” as graphs, unicursal lines

elements of topology: labyrinths, verifying if a point belongs to closed shape, 3d topology tricks

elements of combinatorics: counting paths, permutations

logic: true and false statements, opposite statement, “knights and liars” problems

strategy games

puzzles