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Help!!! How big of a jump is Saxon Algebra I???

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School wants to place ds into Saxon Algebra I based on his test results:eek:


DS is very smart in math. However, we have not covered dividing fractions, division with a decimal divisor, or multiplying with two decimal factors yet to name a few. He does catch on very easy and loves watching Khan Academy math and algebra videos. We whizzed through CLE Math 400 in about 3 months. He is finishing up 4th grade.


I am wondering if Saxon Algebra I reviews any of the pre-algebra stuff found in Saxon 8/7. I am wondering if it will be too much of a jump. I do not want ds to spend hours every night on math since school itself will be a huge transition. An hour a night on math would be ok as long as he still has free time.


Any thoughts?

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It's a pretty big jump. It covers pre-algebra topics pretty briefly & then jumps right in. Most students find it to be a full hour of math homework at least, many find it to be more like 90 minutes. All review of decimals is covered in one lesson, lesson 4, Review of Arithmetic.


And that's for the 3rd edition that most homeschools use - most schools use 4th edition, where the algebra moves even faster -all work with fractions or decimals is covered in a brief review in lessons 10 & 11 & then they move on. You can see the Table of Contents for both 3rd and 4th editions on Rainbow Resource. They pretty much start out talking about properties of algebra and move into topics like absolute value, exponents, and isolating the variable straight away. Fourth edition also has a lot about functions.


I would get the school to place him in a pre-algebra class instead. If you explain to them that he has not yet covered some basic fraction and decimal topics, they should be understanding, I would hope, especially at his very young age. Most kids who struggle with algebra have problems with either fractions or exponents, and dividing fractions in particular is a concept used very frequently in algebra.

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I think you will regret placing him in algebra before he has completed elementary math. The biggest problem that I see kids have with Algebra is not having a good understanding of fractions. Not having a full compliment of basic math skills would be rough and in fourth grade, odds are he doesn't have the logic skills needed for algebra yet either. I would not go along with the placement.


Obviously he is good at math or he wouldn't test so well and that is terrific. It can be a challenge to keep a child like that challenged in a standard math curriculum path. Best wishes on choosing the right path for your ds.

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No way would I ever suggest such a leap based on one placement test-- especially if the test was multiple choice!


He is missing critical skills that are vital in Algebra 1! The text will not teach those skills-- and if he picks up 'only what he needs along the way' he will miss out on so much more!!!


I'm all for accelerating bored/gifted students--but I'm not a proponent of skipping this much material-- crazy!

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