Q&A #19885

Geometry for "gifted" student

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From: ---
To: Teacher2Teacher Service
Date: Oct 21, 2008 at 15:27:45
Subject: Geometry for "gifted" student

HI. Wondering if you had any thoughts on whether it is possible to "extend" 9th grade Geometry class material for a gifted student -- extending it, say, into her areas of interest, which are Biology and Biomedical research? The problem is that she hasn't yet studied Physics, Trig or Calculus? Would it just be better for her to complete the regular 9th grade curriculum, and look for Geometry applications as she moves into Physics, Trig and Calc.? Thanks for any thoughts! I am a parent, not a teacher, trying to get my gifted daughter's math needs met, EITHER by finding some kind of appropriate YEAR-LONG approaches and materials to "extend" the reach of the course while she is in the 9th grade Geometry course, OR by obtaining permission for her to move through the course at her own pace and finish by mid-year (to fit in some other course). I'm not a "math" person, per se, hence the questions. I was hoping that someone could tell me if 9th grade high-school geometry COULD even be "meaningfully extended" to make the course beneficial and of academic value to her ALL YEAR -- IS it possible to go into fluid mechanics, for example, without having yet studied Physics -- or would she be better off just moving thru this regular 9th-grade course material at her own accelerated pace, perhaps with some "extended asides" as appropriate, and then moving on -- being done with this course, and knowing to expect to see other types of geometry later on in college or graduate studies, after she'd had more science and more math to tie into it -- It just occurred to me that you might not be aware of the typical 9th-grade Geometry course contents (and we're here in Pennsylvania, too). These statements are from the high-school's website, and will put the course in perspective for you. My daughter is extremely discouraged by the painfully SLOW movement through course material, and the redundancy of the presentations -- and she has the "top" teacher and the "top" level class offered. She's a very visual person and likes math; she "gets" this stuff the first time through (and sits bored thru umpteen repetitions until the others get it), and she NEEDS to either move through and be done, OR have it "extended" in some way that has value to her professional goals... but that's what I'm trying to ascertain -- CAN it be "extended" now, with her having ZERO background in Physics or Trig or Calculus or Statistics -- or does it make sense to acquire what's here and be done, for now? Thanks, Karen COURSE DESCRIPTION: GEOMETRY, LEVEL I In this course, you will develop skills in defining terms, thinking logically, and arriving at conclusions, both geometric and non-geometric. Lines, angles, circles, triangles, quadrilaterals and other geometric figures are studied. Students become familiar with two-column, paragraph, and indirect proofs. The relationship of geometry to arithmetic, algebra, and right triangle trigonometry is emphasized. You will also learn and develop some basic concepts of solid geometry, coordinate geometry, and probability. COURSE TOPICS: In Geometry, you will study basic definitions and concepts relevant in Geometry. You will learn how to use deductive structure in which conclusions are justified by means of previously assumed or proved statements. You will learn the concept of congruent angles, segments, and triangles. You will also learn the concept of similar figures, the Pythagorean Theorem, circles, area, surface area and volume of various geometric figures.

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