The Pre-Algebra course is offered in sixth grade as part of an accelerated math program designed to meet students' academic needs. Your child's past academic history in the area of mathematics demonstrated a need for a modification to the regular sixth grade curriculum.
Our goal for all students is that they be appropriately challenged and placed in the program that meets his/her needs most effectively; therefore, if your child's teacher should find that the accelerated program is too challenging for you child and not an appropriate placement, a recommendation will be made at the end of the first marking period to move into one of the heterogeneously grouped math classes working thought the regular program planned for 6th grade. Likewise, if additional enrichment is needed, your child's classroom teacher will provide that enrichment so they can be appropriately challenged.
In order to help the students learn and to prepare them for future advanced math courses, all 6th Grade Pre-Algebra teachers adhere to the following guidelines:
- Homework will be given daily
- ON-going assessments, both announced and unannounced, will be administered
- Tests must be taken within reasonable time limits
- Retests will not be an option (students will be given opportunities to learn the content they have not mastered through remediation with the teacher. Sometimes, our assessments include both current and previously learned skills. This provides an opportunity for students to demonstrate their understanding of skills they missed on an assessment earlier in the year. If a skill or concepts is not reassessed on a unit test later in the year, teachers have the ability to write their own assessment questions to determine their students' full understanding of the topic)
Although this is the beginning of the school year, it is important for you to understand the placement criteria for the 7th grade math courses. This makes the expectations clear so there is no confusion at the time of placement or next school year when you receive your child's schedule for 7th grade. In February, you child will be placed in the most appropriate math course. If the placement changes, you will receive a new letter at the end of the year with your child's revised placement. Assuming your child does well in pre-algebra this year, there are two options for 7th grade accelerated math students. The requirements for both are listed below. Students who do not earn at least a 70% in Pre-algebra this year will have to attend summer school to meet the requirements or repeat Pre-Algebra in 7th grade.
To be placed into 7th grade Accelerated Algebra I, the following criteria will be used:
6th grade Pre-Algebra Final Course Grade, A- (90%) or better OR Teacher Recommendation
To be placed into 7th grade Algebra 1A, the following criteria will be used:
6th grade Pre-Algebra Final Course Grade, C- (70%) or better OR Teacher Recommendation
As you know, elementary classrooms have moved back to a letter grade format for reporting progress. You noticed above that the prerequisites for both Accelerated Algebra 1 and Algebra 1A are final course grades expressed as a percent. These prerequisites are consistent for all students whether they are entering 7th, 8th, or 9th grade. The prerequisites were based on years of data and are consistent across all middle schools. For this reason, 6th grade pre-algebra teachers will continue to calculate a percent grade in the same way they calculated grades in the past. 6th grade pre-algebra teachers will report the student's grade as a letter (A, B,C, D) in each progress period. Prior to the end of each marking period, I will send home a progress report which reflects a breakdown of all points your child has earned in each of the pre-algebra categories: Unit assessments, quizzes, problem-solving, homework. These reports will also reflect your child's GPA(expressed as a percent) for the marking period. You are welcome to request more frequent updates on their percent grade if needed. You will also receive more specific feedback on unit assessments that reports your child's progress towards mastering the standards in our reporting system.
Each student is responsible for bringing the following materials to class each day:
- 3-subject spiral notebook
- Homework (must be completed on time, 20-30 minutes per night / weekend; includes reviewing notes from the day)
- 2 pencils; 1 red pencil/pen