Hill School Introduces Integrated Math

After the inaugural year of Integrated Math, the math department is in the process of prepping for the program’s second year.

So far, Elizabeth Dollhopf, the department chair, believes the process to be going well.

“We’re very excited by how it went this year. We think lots of students made the connection we were hoping they would make,” Dollhopf said.

There are currently four different paths for Integrated Math, all of which will cover topics through Pre-Calculus and prepare students to take Calculus when they are finished. Students will either Integrated math for one, two, three or four years.

One of the reasons that the school made the switch was to avoid compartmentalizing information in different areas of math. The math department often found that students would view Algebra and Geometry as two separate entities.

“There are many connections [between Algebra and Geometry],” Dollhopf said. “Take, for example, a line. You have the geometric definition of line, but we graph lines in Algebra and they have equations, and students tend to think of those as two spate ideas.”

Another reason the school implemented Integrated Math was to place a higher focus on Statistics.

“Not all of our students are leaving with a general understanding of statistics, which is something that most of them will use in their adult lives,” Dollhopf said.

Programming is another subject that will be tackled in Integrated Math, especially during the 4th form year.

However, Dollhopf says that it is not in place of an Intro to Coding class but more of an ‘exposure.’

A question that students often ask is whether having a note on their transcript will hurt their chances with college admissions, but Dollhopf assures student it will not.

“We’re not the first school to develop an Integrated Math program… there are many schools who are doing an Integrated Program, but not as put together as we wanted,” Dollhopf said. “It is not foreign to colleges to see that notation. Most of our students will take Calculus, and if colleges see that they know you’ve had everything before.”