Stamford American Elementary School Curriculum Guide - page 17

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Our Mathematics Program identifies the expectations considered essential in
our curriculum. These expectations are arranged into five interwoven strands of
knowledge:
• Data handling
• Measurement
• Shape and space
• Pattern, functions and algebra
• Number
Data handling allows us to make a summary of what we know about the world and
to make inferences about what we do not know. Data can be collected, organized,
represented and summarized in a variety of ways to highlight similarities, differences
and trends. The chosen format should illustrate the information without bias or
distortion. Measurement is to attach a number to a quantity using a chosen unit.
Since the attributes being measured are continuous, ways must be found to deal with
quantities that fall between numbers. Shape and space refers to the regions, paths
and boundaries of natural space that can be described by shape. An understanding of
the interrelationships of shape allows us to interpret, understand and appreciate our
two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) world. Pattern and function helps
students to begin to understand how mathematics applies to the world in which we
live. The repetitive features of patterns can be identified and described as generalized
rules called “functions”. This builds a foundation for the later study of algebra. The
number strand is used to interpret information, make decisions and solve problems.
Our number system is a language for describing quantities and the relationships
between quantities.
Science
Stamford’s Science Program is aligned with the AERO Science standards, and identifies
the significant components into four main strands covered by the unit of inquiry:
• Living things
• Earth and space
• Materials and matter
• Forces and energy
Living things focuses on the study of the characteristics, systems and behaviors of
humans, other animals, and of plants, and the interactions and relationships between
and among them, and with their environment. Earth and space is the study of planet
Earth, its resources, its position in the universe and its relationship with the sun, and
the natural phenomena and systems that shape the planet and the distinctive features
that identify it. Materials and matter is the study of the properties, behaviors and uses
of materials, both natural and human-made. Forces and energy is the study of energy,
its origins, storage and transfer, and the work it can do.
Students will develop their observational skills by using their senses to gather and
record information, and they will use their observations to identify simple patterns,
make predictions and discuss their ideas. They will explore the way objects and
phenomena function and will recognize basic cause and effect relationships. Students
will examine change over time and know that different variables and conditions may
affect change. They will be aware of different perspectives and they will show care
and respect for themselves, other living things and the environment. Students will
communicate their ideas or provide explanations using their own scientific experience
and vocabulary.
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