# Algebra Curriculum

## Algebra 2 vs. Algebra 2 Honors

## Goals

### Compare and contrast Algebra 2 vs. Algebra 2 Honors on various parameters:

- Prerequisite knowledge
- Scope of Course Content & Lesson Structure
- Skills needed for success
- Tests, Quizzes, Homework, & Projects
- Teacher expectations
- Typical next course

## Prerequisite Knowledge

**Algebra 2**

- Geometry grade of C or better
- Solid foundation of basic Algebra skills
- May need to refresh algebra skills if “rusty”

**Algebra 2 Honors**

- Grade of B or better in Honors Geometry, or…
- Grade of A in Geometry…
- Well-developed understanding of algebra concepts & skills
- (A in Algebra 1)
- Advanced, precise math vocabulary

## Course Content & Lesson Structure

**Algebra 2**

- Cover Virginia SoL and FCPS content rqmts.
- Broad range of topics (See next page)
- Lesson often lecture-based with guided notes
- All material presented in class (external research or reading typically not required)
- Some memorization required
- Problems in lessons map directly to problems in homework and assessments
- Same textbook as Honors

**Algebra 2 Honors**

- More challenging problems, more depth of content, and extensions
- Explore multiple ways to solve a problem
- Frequent “discovery” learning & peer discussion
- Fast-paced instruction/classwork
- Student responsible for notetaking, and supplementing class instruction with textbook reading & external research (internet…)
- Encounter “new” problems in homework and tests that require novel application of knowledge

## Algebra 2 Covers a very broad range of concepts/topics:

- Graphing
- Absolute Value
- Linear Programming
- Polynomial Functions (equations with x3, x4, x5, …)
- Square Roots, Cube Roots, 4th Roots, …
- Logarithms & Exponents
- Complex (Imaginary) Numbers
- Rational Functions
- Probability with Sequence & Series
- Matrix Algebra

## Algebra 2 Honors adds several extensions

- Matrix Algebra
- Conics
- Families of Lines
- Piecewise Functions …

## Skills for Success

**Algebra 2**

- Organized notes / materials
- Completes homework on time
- Prepares for tests/quizzes
- Gets help when needed
- Willing to work through difficult problems
- Willing to learn procedures to solve problems

**Algebra 2 Honors**

- Well-organized notes / materials
- Completes homework and further researches topics of interest
- Confident in math abilities Proactively seeks help when needed; uses peer study groups
- Seeks challenging problems and enjoys overcoming obstacles
- Wants to understand concepts behind math rules & procedures
- Seeks best way to solve a problem Enjoys talking about math
- Actively participates in class
- Finds math FUN! [like a game]

## Homework and Assessments

**Algebra 2**

- 30-45 minutes for homework per block class
- Homework problems match problems covered in class
- Additional examples & practice available in textbook
- Basic homework problems assigned
- Some tests are cumulative
- Test questions mirror classwork and homework
- Flexible test time (generally)

**Algebra 2 Honors**

- 45-60 minutes for homework per block class
- Most homework and test problems match lesson examples, but some problems require students to apply what they have learned to a unique context
- Challenging homework problems assigned
- Most tests are cumulative
- Test problems may require creative approach applying skills
- Tests are time-constrained
- Occasional “project” assignments

## Teacher Expectations

**Algebra 2 **

- Attend class on time
- Complete homework
- ake accurate class notes
- Ask for help when needed
- Prepare for assessments
- Contribute to class discussions
- Actively participate in group work

**Algebra 2 Honors **

- Engage in active class discussions
- Complete problems quickly and accurately
- Homework is neat, correct, and thorough
- Proactively seek help when needed, and offer help to peers
- Research related math topics and share insights with class
- Offer different / better ways to solve a problem
- Make connections & conjectures based on prior knowledge
- Precise math vocabulary & skills

## Typical Next Course

**Algebra 2**

Most Algebra 2 students are sophomores, and will follow one of the following paths in their final two high school years:

- Pre-Calculus to Calculus AB
- Pre-Calculus to Calculus (non-AP)
- Pre-Calculus to Prob/Stat
- Pre-Calculus to Comp Science

**Algebra 2 Honors**

Algebra 2 Honors students are usually freshmen or sophomores, and may plan on one of these paths for the next two years:

- Pre-Calculus Honors to Calculus BC
- Pre-Calculus Honors to Calculus AB

If schedules permit, these students may additionally schedule one of these math courses:

- AP Statistics
- AP Computer Science