Why Students Learn Better with Singapore Math!

Updated: Aug 14, 2019

Singapore Math is one of the top math curriculum's and teaching methods in the world. It was developed in Singapore in the 1980’s and featured a new approach to teaching math. Based upon this new methodology, test score in Singapore increased dramatically in subsequent years raising the profile of this teaching method. Today, schools around the world have embraced Singapore Math to help their students build their math skills, improve problem solving and test scores, and provide real-world applications they can use every day.

The advantages of learning Singapore Math includes focusing on covering fewer topics in greater depth and the strength of its three-step learning process.

Covering Fewer Topics in Greater Depth

Compared to traditional math curriculum, Singapore math focuses on fewer topics, but covers them in greater detail. This provides students with a strong foundation as they progress through their lesson plans. Each grade level lesson plan builds upon a student’s prior knowledge and skill, with the student mastering them before they move on to the next level. With students mastering these skills at each grade level, they do not need to relearn them as they move up to the next level. By the end of elementary school, Singapore Math students have mastered multiplication and division, fractions and can solve difficult multi-step word problems.

Singapore Math produces math success in the Classroom

Three-Step Learning Process

Singapore Math teaches students mathematical concepts in a three-step learning process: concrete, pictorial, and abstract.

The first of the three steps is concrete, where a student learns math concepts while handling objects like chips, disks, cubes or cards. This hands-on process helps students learn to count objects by physically lining them up in a row. They then learn basic arithmetic operations such as addition or subtraction by physically adding or removing the objects from each row.

Students then transition to the pictorial step by drawing diagrams called “bar-models” to represent specific quantities of an object. This involves drawing a rectangular bar to represent a specific quantity. For example, if a short bar represents five chips, then a bar twice as long would represent ten. By visualizing the difference between the two bars, students learn to solve problems of addition and subtraction.

Once students have learned to solve mathematical problems using bar modeling, they begin to solve mathematical problems with abstract tools like numbers and symbols. Students’ progress to this stage after they have demonstrated a solid understanding of the concrete and pictorial stages of math problem solving.

Students thrive and learn math skills more quickly and thoroughly using this methodology. Parents also find it easier to work with their children as they learn and practice their growing math skills at home. In addition, the Singapore Math methodology helps both visual and audible learners develop and master math skills more quickly.

We at Limai Academy begin using the Singapore Math in Kindergarten reinforcing the math skills from an early age. To learn more about the Singapore Math program at Limai Academy, feel free to contact us at (626) 314-3566 or

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