Q&A #4990

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Teaching algebra in middle school

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From: Tim Torgerson

To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion
Date: 2003102622:02:40
Subject: Re: algebra for advanced 7th graders

I have twenty years of teaching experience in a private school. Four
years ago our school decided to group math students beginning in the
5th grade through 8th grade. This has allowed us to teach more to the
level of the student and not to the middle of the group. We offer
pre-algebra to 7th graders and 8th graders, and Algebra to 8th
graders. After fourth grade, we use a placement test and teacher
recommendation to place the students in three different levels in 5th
grade. Only those that are placed in the highest level will be able to
advance to Algebra by 8th grade. 
Those in the middle category will get pre-algebra and those in the
lower group will get the basic general math necessary before high
school. Kids definitely learn at different paces, and we have found
grouping them to be a big benefit to reach the different levels of
learning within the students.

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