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If you've gone through LoF Advanced Algebra . . .


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Can you tell me if it gets *really* difficult by the end of the book? For example, I took many years of math in high school and college, and I don't think I ever did partial fractions. And chained arrow notation . . . I asked a friend who is a nuclear scientist and he didn't know what I was talking about. Anyway, is it really important that we get all of this? Or would you give your dc an Alg II credit if s/he made it through lesson 83 (Home Companion) and crashed at that point? Thanks.



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  • 3 weeks later...
Guest MathChick

I do not have the book, however, having looked at the series...


Algebra II/III/Precalculus/College Algebra is a mixed up area to begin with in schools. Often there's what is in the curriculum being one thing, and what actually gets taught being something completely different. This book seems to encompass Alg II & III.


I've seen amazing honors Alg II classes for 10th graders that hit practically every topic in the Advanced Algebra book except Chapter 8 and the parts of Chapter 5 involving matrices plus threw in a full Trig class's worth of Trig. I've seen kids from that class go into precalc classes that then rehashed all of what they got in Alg II to a lower level the next year.


I've also seen G/T 8th grade Algebra II classes, that didn't seem to get much past where 8th grade Algebra I used to get before the statewide Algebra I test was implemented. Those kids then end up with a rehash of Algebra 1.5/2 in the first half of 10th grade precalc. Technically, most of this book is on the schedule, but they don't get it. Some of them don't really go on right off from there, but instead take College Algebra (a full year, Algebra 1.5/2/3 type course) and get most of the rest of precalc, the rest go on to Calc and pick up the missing bits the best they can.


Many course progressions don't mess with partial fractions until precalc or calc.


It all really depends on what you plan on doing next. If the answer is trig then calc, I would strongly suggest that they learn partial fractions and sequences & series before calc, especially if you're going in depth and/or quick. If you're doing precalc it can be done then, or if you're doing a year long calc class to the AP Calc AB level standard you could probably move these into the beginning of calc. Personally I think 1-7 & 10 is where most Alg II classes get/strive to get.


Chained arrow notation is just a brain snack for a kid. Most people never ever ever use it, it's more about learning to think differently about something then actually learning it to use at this point, kinda why we teach cryptography in math - what we teach is not useful at the level we teach it, but it gets the kids thinking (differently). I'd never expect my hs kids to learn chained arrow notation as part of their curriculum. Heck, I don't think most math undergrad programs would expect their kids to learn it as part of their curriculum.

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