Big Ideas Math supports the Mathematical Practice Standards’ emphasis on mathematical reasoning in a variety of ways.
The materials support students in constructing viable arguments and critiquing the reasoning of others in every section. Students will see Error Analysis exercises where they will look at another students’ work, determine what mistake was made, and describe how to fix it. In the High School program, students will also read someone’s argument in the Making an Argument exercises and determine if the person’s argument is correct and why. Students will also construct their own arguments in the Thought Provoking exercises in High School. These challenging exercises require students to think outside the scope of the lesson and answer a perplexing question.
Students also see Modeling with Mathematics and Real-Life Applications as examples in almost every lesson. Students will often create diagrams, make arguments, use mathematical models, and write explanations. In the few cases when these examples do not appear in the lesson, rest assured that there are exercises involving modeling and real-life applications, though students will have to do them without seeing an example first. Every chapter also has a Performance Task associated with it, which can be found online and in the Assessment Book. Students must apply their knowledge from the chapter to a real-life problem encompassing everything they learned. In Middle School, there are also Performance Tasks written to every standard.