Algebra Course Description


Finding Success in My Class:

EIGHT SIGNIFICANT ATTRIBUTES OF AN OUTSTANDING MATH STUDENT


Curriculum:

SpringBoard provides a comprehensive and systematic approach to preparing ALL students for the demands of rigorous AP courses, college classes, and other post-secondary experiences. SpringBoard prepares students through sequential, scaffolded development of the prerequisite skills and knowledge needed for success in AP Calculus and Statistics. Through ongoing exposure to rigorous mathematics content and experience with the thinking processes needed to analyze, solve, and explain complex math problems, students exit SpringBoard equipped with the kind of higher order thinking skills, knowledge, and behaviors necessary to be successful in AP classes and beyond. Algebra 1 students:

  • Gain an understanding of the properties of real numbers.
  • Formalize the language of functions.
  • Explore the behavior of functions, numerically, graphically, analytically and verbally.
  • Use technology to discover relationships, test conjectures and solve problems.
  • Write expressions, equations and inequalities from physical models.
  • Communicate mathematics understanding formally and informally.

Essential Questions

The following are the essential questions for each unit that the students will be able to answer by the end:

Unit 1 – Patterns and Equations
1) How are patterns, equations, and graphs related?
2) Why are the properties of real numbers important when solving equations?

Unit 2 – Linear Functions
1) How can you show mathematical relationships?
2) Why are linear functions useful in real-world settings?

Unit 3 – Extensions of Linear Concepts
1) Why would you use multiple representations of linear equations and inequalities?
2) How are systems of linear equations and inequalities useful in interpreting real world situations?

Unit 4 – Exponents, Radicals and Polynomials
1) How do multiplicative patters model the physical world?
2) How are adding and multiplying polynomial expressions different from each other?

Unit 5 – Quadratic Functions
1) How are quadratic functions used to model, analyze and interpret mathematical relationships?
2) Why is it advantageous to know a variety of ways to solve and graph quadratic functions?

Unit 6 – Data Analysis and Surveys
1) How do sampling methods affect the evaluation of survey results?
2) How can displays and summaries be used to interpret and communicate the results of surveys?

In addition to Springboard, students will regularly be assigned Flipped Classroom lessons where they watch a video of a lesson at home.  The expectation is that they will take good notes throughout these lessons to bring their own insights into the next class period, where we will dive deeper into the concepts presented in the video.


Grading Policy

My goal is to help all students find success in the math classroom and gain an appreciation for the subject.  Too many students all over the world leave the math classroom feeling defeated with little hope to rebound from prior mistakes.  Luckily, I am not grading for mistakes, but for mastery, which at any time can be attained with some effort.  In all honesty, some students will have to work extremely hard to reach the level of mastery, but I will offer them the chance to work for it at any time, as many times as they want.  I don’t want a classroom full of students who ‘already get it,’ but a room full of resilient pupils ready to work towards success and find value in it.

Brass Tax:

  • I will award up to 100% credit for homework if a student wishes to do the work, by fixing the mistakes, answering a new set of questions with mastery, or by simply finishing up an assignment that was incomplete.  The key though is to do the work by the time it is due.  Don’t get behind as best as you can help it.  It only makes things more difficult for me and for you.  Let’s find success together!
  • I will award up to 90% credit for assessments if a student requests to answer a new set of problems for the ones they answered incorrectly.
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