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Advanced math program adding up to higher achievement for Oakbrook students

Oakbrook math

It is all adding up to a higher level achievement for Oakbrook advanced math students.

Students in the accelerated program are topping national averages when it comes to growth in their NWEA math scores.
“I like the advanced mathematics course because it goes quicker,” said Oakbrook sixth grader Carmen Wojno-Mass. “It is taught at a pace that is perfect for me.”
As with any good math story, the numbers tell the story:

  • The average for the Oakbrook students exceeds what NWEA considers the highest achievement level of a high school graduate.
  • Students are on average achieving among the top 90 percent compared to their national peers.
  • Three students are placing at the 99 percent level.
  • Student math scores jumped about 20 points this year – or nearly 250 percent higher than NWEA expects for their growth. 

Teacher William Mader attributed their success to an environment that takes problem solving  and critical thinking skills to a higher level.
“The pacing and expectations set high expectations that these talented mathematicians find challenging, but also obtainable,” he said.  “They get consistent practice at solving complicated math scenarios and build their confidence and mental skills each time to do so."

Students in the advanced math 6th-grade program cover the grade level content and half of the 7th grade math course.
In junior high, students take the advanced math course or go directly into the Algebra One program.
Kevin  Mikhael, a student in the Oakbrook program, said he enjoys math because he sees the everyday value of the subject.

“I think it empowers your brain to solve problems faster and more efficiently,” he said.

Mikhael, Wojno-Mass and their classmate Henry Foote all placed within the top 99 percent of students this year on the NWEA.

Their advice to others who may find math challenging?

“I would say break it down and look at it in its simplest form,” Foote said. “There are a lot of complicated ways to solve a problem that can be confusing. But if you find out how to make a basic equation work, like A equals B times C, it can become easier when you know where to put the numbers in.”