Pre-Algebra

Rules for Computation of Integers.pdf

Fraction Decimal Computation Notes.pdf

This year we will finish up the study of Pre-Algebra using the Common Core Math State Standards (CCSS). This will not change our gifted curriculum much. It will require the use of the Pre-Algebra textbooks. The goal will be to make sure there are no gaping holes in our mathematical learning as students must be prepared to take Honors Algebra in 8th grade. We will begin the year with a review of some previous topics (such as order of operations, positive and negative numbers, expressions and equations) to assess where each student is at in their mathematical knowledge. We will then advance into our in depth look at the following topics starting with Chapter 8 from the Pre-Algebra text: variables and patterns as they relate to Algebra; linear functions and graphing, powers and non-linear functions, real numbers and right triangles, distance and angle geometry, surface area and volume, and finish up with statistics and probability. 

To start the year we hope to have assignments each week from Study Island. These are to be linked to our new MAP (NWEA) testing, Our goal is that every math student will exceed on the Common Core test (PARCC) which will test the CCSS math standards only.. Once Study Island is up and running it is a "project" most weeks and will be a recorded grade.

Expect homework most nights. It isn't overwhelmingly long, but it may be difficult. It will require consistency each day to stay current with our learning. In addition to homework we will have mid-chapter quizzes  At the end of each book study, there may be two assessments: one a written test and the other a project which relates to our study. Projects can be done with other students or alone.

Calculator Usage 

     It is my firm belief that calculators must have a place in education today and therefore I expect students to have a calculator with them daily in math class. Part of my responsibility as a teacher is to see that students know how to use a calculator in an effective manner. This does not mean that mental or written calculation is unimportant. The new PARCC test does not allow for calculator use on every problem. They also only allow a simple 4-function calculator. Nothing can replace a strong knowledge of basic computational skills. I encourage students to use the calculator as a learning tool, just like any other technological advancement, but not to rely on it as a crutch. This is how we will use them in the classroom and I expect students to do the same at home. Any scientific/fraction calculator will work. Suggested ones are TI30's, TI34's and Casio models. They run from $9-18 and can be used for a few years to come.

    We will also be using graphing calculators when the topic calls for their use. These are very expensive and will only be used for in-class exploration. There is no need to purchase a graphing calculator for individual use as we have a classroom set. There is also a website link on the links page that can access graphing calculators if desired.

 
 
 

Grading Policy

  • Grades will be earned on a percentage basis. The district grading scale is used: 80% tests/assessments; 20% homework

  • All homework should be done in a separate math spiral unless otherwise stated.

  • All work should be shown, unless otherwise stated. The calculator is a useful tool for students to check the accuracy of answers, but help little in assessing correctness of method. SHOW ALL YOUR WORK!

  • Extra credit is just that, EXTRA. It will be offered at the end of each unit of study only. It is used to accumulate additional points on homework only and to help in studying for an upcoming test.

  • Most homework will be discussed the next day, whether with partners and/or as a whole class. Homework quizzes (a selection of key problems) will be used regularly to check to see if students are doing the assigned work, correcting mistakes, and relearning topics initially misunderstood. Homework quizzes are the homework grades. Staying up-to-date on homework is critical to being a complete student.

  • Our Smart Response System may be used to gather information and determine whether topics are being understood in class by each individual. These may be used as a quick quiz over the designated material.

  • Homework will count for 20% of the grade, tests/quizzes/projects/tasks for 80% of the total grade. 

  • Time can be arranged at lunch (preferred) or after school (arranged in advance) if any student needs further help understanding the concepts presented.

​Links which might assist in your learning.

  • Study Islan​d (if you remember your password)

  • Khan Academy (tutorials, practice problems, short assessments)

  • Cool math (good for teaching and practicing fraction and decimal skills and free)

  • Virtual ​Nerd (video lessons by topic​ explained in a simple manner)

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