Big Ideas

Big Ideas are intended to support teachers in teaching to a larger idea for each week and to deliberately connect the day’s work to the goal for the week. Our theory is that mathematical ideas do not come in lesson-sized chunks; usually, they are larger. In the following video, Phil Daro shares how we should be teaching to chapters not lessons.

Phil Daro - Teaching Chapters, Not Lessons from SERP MEDIA on Vimeo.

We have written the Big Ideas, and their corresponding evidence of student understanding, so that representations, such as visual patterns, graphs, tables, and equations, are woven across different units of study rather than being developed an isolated unit. Some Big Ideas are repeated but approached differently in different units. This is intended to support students in seeing connections between different areas of mathematics and in having multiple opportunities to develop fluency with these different representations.

Each Big Idea has resources aligned to it, including tasks that support instructional routines and tasks that support exploring the Big Idea as a whole. This guide provides information on how to use the more general Big Idea resources and this page describes our approach to instructional routines.