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Math Curriculum

The Fundamentals of Math (Elementary)


What’s New?

The Ministry is emphasizing fundamental math concepts and skills that students are expected to know in each grade.


What are the Fundamentals of Math?


Fundamental math concepts and skills are described below in the following 5 areas:

  • Working with numbers: Understanding and using numbers (e.g., being able to read, represent, count, order, estimate, compare, compose, decompose, and recompose numbers).

  • Recognizing and applying understanding of number properties: Understanding how numbers behave in operations and drawing on that understanding to master math facts and perform calculations.

  • Mastering math facts: Understanding and recalling math facts, using a variety of strategies.

  • Developing Mental Math Skills: Doing calculations in the mind, with little or no  use of paper and pencil or calculator.

  • Developing proficiency with operations: Performing calculations with ease, precision, and consistency and with a general understanding of number and operations, number properties, and problem solving applications.

Why is it important for students to master the fundamentals of math?

Ensuring students have a strong understanding of the fundamentals of math is one of the best ways to prepare them for success, now and in the future.

Understanding how numbers work is foundational to all aspects of mathematics. As students progress through the grades, they learn about different types of numbers and how those numbers behave when operations are applied to them. Recognizing and understanding number properties is essential to arithmetic and algebra.


Has the math curriculum changed?

No.  The Ontario Math Curriculum has not changed.  What’s changed provincially is the focus on the fundamental mathematical concepts and skills.  The OCDSB has always focused on including the teaching of the fundamentals of math, as outlined in the OCDSB Balanced Math Framework (Building Skills and Competencies).


How can I support my child?

Make math fun! Math is everywhere, and you can help your children make connections between what they are learning in school and everyday experiences.  Ideas about how math can be part of your regular day-to-day routine can be found in the Ministry’s Parent’s Guide To The Fundamentals of Math, Grades 1 - 8
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