This is a complete course in high school Algebra I which will cover fundamental concepts in algebra and provide a solid foundation of mathematical literacy, problem solving, reasoning, and critical thinking skills that are necessary for the exploration of more advanced and rigorous topics in mathematics. This course is designed to emphasize the study of algebraic problem-solving with the incorporation of real-world applications. Topics in Algebra I include number systems, linear systems, rational numbers, complex numbers, exponents, roots, radicals, quadratic equations, polynomials, factoring, absolute values, ratios, and proportions. In addition, the course will cover solving and graphing systems of functions, linear equations, and inequalities. Students will explore these topics through class discussions, practice problems, and open-ended problem-solving.
Prerequisite: Students should have a solid foundation in pre-algebra topics in order to take this class.
Workload: Students should expect to spend 1.25-1.75 hours per day on reading, review, and homework on most non-class days. Homework assignments will run on a 13-day cycle in this class with: a new unit introduced on a Thursday (day 1), lecture on Monday (day 6), questions and answers on the next Thursday (day 8), and homework due the next Monday (day 13). After introduction of a new topic (day 1), students will be expected to read the assigned section and look through worked, sample problems before the lecture the following Wednesday (day 6). Solutions will be provided for some homework problems, but students are expected to show all steps of all work.
Assignments: The Canvas online class management system will be used to post assignments and scores. Students should have their own e-mail address in order to be set up as users of the Canvas system. Parents can also be set up as Canvas guests/observers for purposes of tracking the student's progress and workload.
Assessments: In this class, the instructor will assess a student's progress by checking that weekly homework sets are complete and giving periodic take-home tests; class participation is also strongly encouraged. Parents will be able to view accumulated points awarded in the class for the purpose of determining a parent-awarded course grade.
Textbook: Students should purchase or rent the required textbook for this class: Algebra I: Expressions, Equations, and Applications by Paul A. Foerster. It is available in a few different editions, each of which is virtually identical: 2nd edition (ISBN-10 020125073X, ISBN-13 978-0201250732), 3rd edition (ISBN-10 0201860945, ISBN-13 978-0201860948), and Classic edition (ISBN-10 020132458X, ISBN-13 978-0201324587). It is also available under the title Foerster Algebra I, Classics edition (ISBN-10 0131657089, ISBN-13 978-0131657083). A calculator is not needed for this course.
Credit: Homeschool families may wish to count this course as a complete credit in Algebra I for purposes of a high school transcript.