This is not directly pertinent to the original question, but I wonder if any districts have ever considered a variation on the two-year block schedule scenario--teach Algebra I and Geometry courses within the same block schedule concurrently, alternating the algebra and geometry days, but stretching it for two years?
It is doubtful that this has been tried on a large scale, yet this is the approach that would most closely resemble at least some of the European programs.
On 04 Nov 2001, Ken Worsley wrote: > Maggi, At Holliston we have had block scheduling for over five >years now and we have tweeked our math program a number of times. - We >are still going over options! > Algebra I will not work in a single semester. The kids need time >to reflect and absorb . . . 90 straight days of doing two lessons a >day just does not cut it. Most (over 60%) take algebra I at the >middle school, so the students in algebra I are not the strongest of >math kids to begin with, so we do 3 terms of algebra I. Some classes >run term 1, 3, and 4 and some 2,3, and 4 or we pair 1,2, and 3 with 1, >2, and 4 (teachers always get two algebra I classes to easy the >scheduling). We offer quarter electives for the kids, Intro to >keyboarding, Intro to Programming, Game Theory, Intro to Accounting >and Business, Elective Phy. Ed. classes, Arts classes, Tech Ed., etc. >Since we have gone to this model out SAT scores in math have gone from >an average of 532 in 1995 to 576 last year. This is with 92-95% of >the kids (about 180) taking the SAT. We still teach geometry and >Algebra II in a semester block but all the kids have to take the >Chicago FST (Functions, Statistics, and Trig) after algebra II for us >to cover all of the standards in the frameworks for algebra II. > > >On 01 Nov 2001, Maggi Hartnett wrote: >>I teach at Ayer High School. We currently have block scheduling with >>Algebra One and Geometry one semester each. >> >>Since the MCAS scores came out, the principal (who is not a math >>teacher) thinks that we should be teaching Algebra One and Geometry >>all year for a block. That is Algebra One Part 1 first semester and >>then Algebra One Part 2 second semester and then the same for >>Geometry. He feels that more is better. >> >>I think that this is too much. What are other schools doing? We >>would like to keep the block scheduling concept. How have you been >>creative about this? >> >>Thank you for any ideas. >> >>Maggi >