Investigations Math Program

About Investigations:
Investigations was developed at TERC, a leading, national nonprofit research and development organization whose mission is to improve mathematics, science, and technology teaching and learning.  

Six major goals guided the development of Investigations. The curriculum is designed to:

  • Support students to make sense of mathematics and learn that they can be mathematical thinkers

  • Focus on computational fluency with whole numbers as a major goal of the elementary grades

  • Provide substantive work in important areas of mathematics—rational numbers, geometry, measurement, data, and early algebra—and connections among them

  • Emphasize reasoning about mathematical ideas

  • Communicate mathematics content and pedagogy to teachers

  • Engage the range of learners in understanding mathematics.

What to Expect with Investigations

Investigations represents a shift in the structure of every math classroom that will be immediately evident to students and parents alike. For example, students will find themselves working in a variety of group settings including: individually, in pairs or small groups, and as whole class. Depending on the grade level, students will use games, classroom discussions, and Math Workshops to dig deeper into the mathematics while making connections across concepts and grade levels.  

Parents will almost immediately recognize a change in their children's’ homework.  Instead of “doing lots of math problems” students will be required to explain their thinking to fewer problems, find different ways of solving the same problem, and play games to reinforce important concepts being taught in the classroom. Parents will also notice that children are more excited about math and will become more confident about their own mathematical understandings.

Investigations will probably be new for most adults who probably learned math by memorizing a series of facts and procedures.  Investigations focuses on the basics and also asks that children develop deep understanding, flexibility, and the ability to reason mathematically - skills that are in highly valued in our high-tech and ever-changing world.

Sites for Students

Math Investigations

Parent Resources

Math Resources for Parents

Click here for the Buncombe County Schools Mathematics homepage. The mathematics curriculum staff of BCS has designed this page to be a resource for parents, students and teachers from kindergarten to graduation from high school. We hope this is an invaluable resource for you as, together, we prepare all students to be mathematical problem solvers best equipped for their future. 

Click on the links below to view videos showing what an Investigations classroom looks like:

Eight Mathematical Practices

The Standards for Mathematical Practice describe varieties of expertise that mathematics educators at all levels should seek to develop in their students.  

The Standards for Mathematical Practice describe ways in which developing student practitioners of the discipline of mathematics increasingly ought to engage with the subject matter as they grow in mathematical maturity and expertise throughout the elementary, middle and high school years. The Standards for Mathematical Content are a balanced combination of procedure and understanding.  

Click this link to watch a video explaining the standards 

The 8 Mathematical Practices are listed below.  A "kid friendly" version of each standard is also included. 

  1. Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them

  2. Reason abstractly and quantitatively

  3. Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others

  4. Model with mathematics

  5. Use appropriate tools strategically

  6. Attend to precision

  7. Look for and make use of structure

  8. Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning

Kid-Friendly Version of Standards 

  1. I never give up on a problem and I do my best to get it right

  2. I can solve problems in more than one way

  3. I can explain my math thinking and talk about it with others

  4. I see the math in everyday life and I can use math to solve everyday problems

  5. I know how to choose and use the right tools to solve a math problem

  6. I can work carefully and check my work

  7. I can use what I know to solve new problems

  8. I can solve problems by looking for rules and patterns