Mathematics Curriculum Portfolio Home Page
Basic Mathematical Skills
This section is included because it shows the important steps that hearing children go
through in mathematics and the steps that the deaf children are trying to accomplish. Every
curriculum includes these steps in some form. The objective is to get the student to master these
skills throughout their high school career.
The Akron Public Schools endorses the ten basic skill areas identified by the National
Council of Supervisors of Mathematics. The ten skill areas are:
1. Problem Solving Skills, Strategies and Techniques
Learning to solve problems is the principal reason for studying mathematics. Problem
solving is the process of applying previously acquired knowledge to new and unfamiliar
situations. Solving word problems in texts is one form of problem solving, but students
also should be faced with nontextbook problems. Problem-solving strategies involve
posing questions, analyzing situations, translating results, illustrating results, drawing
diagrams, and using trial and error. In solving problems, students need to be able to
apply the rules of logic necessary to arrive at valid conclusions. They must be able to
determine which facts are relevant. They should be unfearful of arriving at tentative
conclusions and they must be willing to subject these conclusions to scrutiny.
2. Applying Mathematics to Everyday Situations
The use of mathematics is interrelated with all computation activities. Students should be
encouraged to take everyday situations, translate them into mathematical expressions,
solve the mathematics, and interpret the results in light of the initial situation.
3. Alertness to the Reasonableness of Results
Due to arithmetic errors or other mistakes, results of mathematical work are sometimes
wrong. Students should learn to inspect all results and to check for reasonableness in
terms of the original problem. With the increase in the use of calculation devices in
society, this skill is essential.
4. Estimation and Approximation
Students should be able to carry out rapid approximate calculations by first rounding off
numbers. They should acquire some simple techniques for estimating quantity, length,
distance, weight, etc. It is also necessary to decide when a particular result is precise
enough for the purpose at hand.
5. Appropriate Computational Skills
Students should gain facility with addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division with
whole numbers and decimals. Today it must be recognized that long, complicated
computations will usually be done with a calculator. Knowledge of single-digit number
facts is essential and mental arithmetic is a valuable skill. Moreover, there are everyday
situations which demand recognition of, and simple computation with, common fractions.
Because consumers continually deal with many situations that involve percentage, the
ability to recognize and use percents should be developed and maintained.
Students should learn the geometric concepts they will need to function effectively in the
3-dimensional world. They should have knowledge of concepts such as point, line,
plane, parallel, and perpendicular. They should know basic properties of simple
geometric figures, particularly those properties which relate to measurement and
problem-solving skills. They also must be able to recognize similarities and differences
As a minimum skill, students should be able to measure distance, weight, time, capacity,
and temperature. Measurement of angles and calculations of simple areas and volumes
are also essential. Students should be able to perform measurement in both metric and
customary systems using appropriate tools.
8. Reading, Interpreting and Constructing Tables, Charts and Graphs
Students should know how to read and draw conclusions from simple tables, maps, charts
and graphs. They should be able to condense numerical information into more
manageable or meaningful terms by setting up simple tables, charts and graphs.
9. Using Mathematics to Predict
Students should learn how elementary notions of probability are used to determine the
likelihood of future events. They should become familiar with how mathematics is used
to help make predictions such as election forecasts.
10. Computer Literacy
It is important for all citizens to understand what computers can and cannot do. Students
should be aware of the many uses of computers in society, such as their use in
teaching/learning, financial transactions, and information storage and retrieval. The
"mystique" surrounding computers is disturbing and can put persons with no
understanding of computers at a disadvantage. The increasing use of computers by
government, industry, and business demands an awareness of computer uses and
Uploaded by: Jessica Soltesz/Kent State University/Deaf Education Major