Mathematics is a group of sciences that includes arithmetic, algebra and geometry and deals with quantity and form with their corresponding numbers and symbols. One of the four fundamental kinds of activities envisaged by Dr. Montessori necessary for a child's development is __Mathematics__. Through it a child can engage in mind activities in an orderly manner for the development of logic and judgment.

During the Absorbent Mind period, ages of birth to six years, a child is unconsciously absorbing observations of his surrounding environment. Through the child's senses, these observations are graded and classified for future use. This organization of observations and experiences is done within his "Mathematical Mind."

At Growing Minds Montessori school, many skills and concepts necessary for math are either introduced or solidified by activities in the Montessori environment before a child ever does any formal math activities. The Math materials are designed to introduce a child to numbers and concepts step by step through a logical progression. First the quantities, then the symbols. With all presentations of mathematical materials, the child is always shown the concrete first - the materials or apparatus itself - then the abstract - such as the numerals and then the two (concrete and abstract) are combined. Dr. Montessori refers to this as "materialized abstractions."

The materials in Math area are very exact with built-in control of error to help develop the sense of accurateness, concreteness, and independence. Because the materials are self-correcting, the child gains confidence from correcting her own work as well as developing problem solving and decision making skills.

There are six subareas in math. In the first area, the child learns quantity, symbol and association, numerical order and counting. In the second area the child is introduced to the Decimal System - Golden (decimal) Beads and cards. In the third area the child uses the number concepts he has acquired to make a new number discovery. In the fourth area, the child practices the previous knowledge and then applies it. As the child becomes more confident of his/her counting abilities through the numerations, golden beads and linear counting activities, (s)he will be introduced to the mathematical functions of addition, multiplication, subtraction and division. Because the child learns the concepts with concrete materials, (s)he is able to internalize it and thus able to understand the process easier and quicker than the child who learns it in abstract form only. The fifth area leads to abstraction. The child is introduced to the Stamp Game, Bead Frame and Dot Board for the mathematical functions. Once the child has gained a good concrete understanding of the mathematical functions then (s)he is ready to work towards abstraction and later to recording of mathematical processes of memorization of math facts. Finally, with the full comprehension of all the above, the child then executes mathematical functions such as fractions, non-Euclidian geometry, algebra, other bases than ten, measurement of time, space, weight, heat, and density. This work can be executed by the child who fully worked through the early works in Math.

When a child learns Mathematics in this developmentally appropriate, concrete, and sequential manner, (s)he will enjoy the work instead of fearing it and would get the satisfaction of learning with abstract materials and then memorizing.