Date: Aug 30, 2013 9:56 PM
Author: Evelyne Stalzer
Subject: IA / Geo Combo Platter Class

So I have just been told that I am teaching a new high school class for our
recidivist algebra students. The goal of the course is to push them through
the IA regents on January 20, 2014, and then give them some nebulous amount
of geometry preparation for the second half of the year, with the idea that
it will enable these weaker students* to go into a regular one year
geometry class (the only kind we offer) next year with a greater hope of

It's a bit of a departure for us as a school, because we function on an
annualized calendar - no three semester courses here. This is a way of
getting around that without having to put students in a full one year
remedial algebra class.

Well, there are good and bad points about any choice we could make for this
population, but ultimately that choice has been made and now I am going to
do my best for them, although I would have wished for more time to prepare.

I am predominantly a geometry teacher, with some other electives. I've
taught IA once, and then Math A before that. I'll be looking at jmap and
old regents, of course, and going through the Prentice Hall Algebra I text
book. But what I would like to ask of the more experienced algebra teachers
on this list is the following question:

If you had to teach this one semester class, what are the top choices for
topics you would cover? Remember, there is a good chance that there will
not be time to cover even half the normal curriculum with this group. So
where would you concentrate your attention?

Thank you for any help you can give me as I gear up to help these kids.

* some are weaker for cognitive reasons, some for work habit reasons, some
for attendance reasons - it's quite a stew.

Evelyne Stalzer
Riverdale / Kingsbridge Academy
Bronx NY