The courses in mathematics emphasize the pattern, structure, and unifying ideas of the discipline. Since we have witnessed tremendous growth in uses of mathematics during the past thirty years, it is virtually impossible to predict all our future mathematical needs. The mathematics program provides opportunities for students to achieve the mathematical, statistical, and computer literacy that will be required by tomorrow's society. In particular, the program focuses on development of concepts and skills in the nine mathematics standards of the Weston Public Schools:
Problem Solving, Number, Computation, Measurement, Geometry,
Statistics, Probability, Functions/Algebra, and General Uses/Connections.
The following guidelines are used by the Department regarding summer school courses for credit, and the placement of students in academic year courses.
1. The mathematics department recommends that students take alternate mathematics courses (summer school, online, or afterschool mathematics courses) only if they have done poorly in the corresponding academic year course or desire such a course for enrichment. When encountering specific mathematics courses for the first time, students should not substitute such alternate courses for regular academic year courses in their mathematics programs. In general only academic year courses provide the time and group interaction necessary to develop an appropriate understanding of the concepts involved. Students will generally not be permitted to skip courses by taking alternate courses and students who take alternate courses prior to the academic year course should do so with the understanding that they will encounter some repetition of material in their academic year course. For further information about this policy, contact the department chair.
2. During late January, teachers recommend to their students courses that they should enroll in for the next year. Those recommendations are based on observed student interest, aptitude, and performance. If a student or a student and his parents question a teacher's recommendation, the teacher should be contacted immediately. The school's override procedure must be completed before students may enroll in courses other than those recommended by their teachers.
3. The Department recommends that all students complete at least three years of a basic college preparatory mathematics program including Algebra II. Juniors are advised to take the Mathematics SAT exam in June and seniors are advised to take the exam in December or January. Students should consult their guidance counselor and their current mathematics teacher for advice in selecting between the two Mathematics SAT exams.
Both Macintosh and PC’s are available to students and staff. All students are instructed in the use of computers and calculators as mathematical tools. Students are required to become proficient in the use of graphing calculators in courses beginning with Algebra II, and most courses include the use of spreadsheets and programming in Scheme as mathematical problem solving tools. The Department sponsors a High School Mathematics Team and sometimes a Computer Science Team that compete in league competitions both locally and regionally throughout the academic year. Students with strong mathematical or computer science abilities are encouraged to participate.
