Kristini2 Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 Hi! Can a kid who has a solid grasp of decimals, percents, fractions, and the very basics of algebra go from another pre-algebra straight to AOPS Intro to Algebra, or should they start with AOPS Pre-Algebra? Said kid did fine on the placement test for intro to algebra, and she's not a kid who deals well with work she considers things she already knows, so I that's why I'm thinking of starting with algebra. Looking ahead at the content areas of the book I think she'll do okay, I'd just love to hear from people who have BTDT. Also, how long does it typically take to get through the Intro to Algebra book? It looks like if she enrolled in the class starting this week she would finish the book around the end of the school year. If it makes a difference said kid is 11-years old, math-minded, and (generally) loves a good challenge. TIA!! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Reefgazer Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 I'm all ears. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

kiana Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 There are quite a few people who went directly into algebra before pre-algebra was written. If she is the type of kid who does not do well with things she already knows I would give it a shot. If it does not work for her you should know within a couple of chapters and you can drop back to pre-algebra. But I would not enroll in the class -- the classes run at a breakneck pace. Many people have taken 2+ years to get all the way through intro algebra with young bright kids. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Kristini2 Posted October 21, 2014 Author Share Posted October 21, 2014 There are quite a few people who went directly into algebra before pre-algebra was written. If she is the type of kid who does not do well with things she already knows I would give it a shot. If it does not work for her you should know within a couple of chapters and you can drop back to pre-algebra. But I would not enroll in the class -- the classes run at a breakneck pace. Many people have taken 2+ years to get all the way through intro algebra with young bright kids. Thanks so much, Kiana! That was sort of my plan. I figure even if we go back to pre-algebra, we'll likely need the algebra book down the line so getting it first won't be a waste. I wasn't planning on enrolling her, just wondering if that was typical speed. The good thing about going with algebra now, is that she won't need to go through everything quickly and she can still be on track for going into a STEM major when she gets to college (which is her current plan, but the kid is an artist at hear so it'll be interesting to see how things shake up as she grows). Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Roadrunner Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 Which program did you use up to this point? Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

regentrude Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 My kids both went from Saxon 8/7 to AoPS Intro to Algebra without problems. My DS had only done a one semester extremely abbreviated run through Saxon 8/7 in spring of 5th grade, because we hated the program, and I condensed it as much as I could and eliminated all non-prealgebra topics not absolutely necessary as a prerequisite for algebra. The AoPS prealgebra text did not exist back then; the sequence began with Intro to Algebra. ETA: DS began Intro to Algebra in 6th grade and took two years to complete the text. DD did the entire book in 7th grade. Neither of them used the online class. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Kristini2 Posted October 21, 2014 Author Share Posted October 21, 2014 Which program did you use up to this point? Hi! She did Visual Math at school in third grade (mixed age classes so she was able to tag along with the older kids for her math) before she came home. We were able to make it sort of work to continue in Visual Math her first year home, but it's set up to be taught in a classroom, so after 4th grade we decided to try something else. She didn't seem ready to jump into algebra last year, so instead she did Life of Fred apples through pre-algebra and really, really solidified decimals, percents, and fractions. Visual Math is discovery based so once I found AOPS, I thought it might be a good fit for her. My kids both went from Saxon 8/7 to AoPS Intro to Algebra without problems. My DS had only done a one semester extremely abbreviated run through Saxon 8/7 in spring of 5th grade, because we hated the program, and I condensed it as much as I could and eliminated all non-prealgebra topics not absolutely necessary as a prerequisite for algebra. The AoPS prealgebra text did not exist back then; the sequence began with Intro to Algebra. ETA: DS began Intro to Algebra in 6th grade and took two years to complete the text. DD did the entire book in 7th grade. Neither of them used the online class. Thank you!! I'm feeling a bit better about letting her give Algebra a go. I'll just let her go at her pace, watch for frustration, and step back if we need to, and let her finish at her pace. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Roadrunner Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 Hi! She did Visual Math at school in third grade (mixed age classes so she was able to tag along with the older kids for her math) before she came home. We were able to make it sort of work to continue in Visual Math her first year home, but it's set up to be taught in a classroom, so after 4th grade we decided to try something else. She didn't seem ready to jump into algebra last year, so instead she did Life of Fred apples through pre-algebra and really, really solidified decimals, percents, and fractions. Visual Math is discovery based so once I found AOPS, I thought it might be a good fit for her. . Never heard of it. :) I asked because it seems to me that kids coming from strong math programs are more able to transition without using a preA program. If you have told me you used Teaching Textbooks, another strong preA program would most likely have been beneficial. If you feel that Visual Math was a solid program, then give algebra a try. In case you change your mind to do aops preA, I am sure it won't lead to boredom. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

EndOfOrdinary Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 In many ways PreA and Algebra can be done side by side. If you look at the videos section of the AoPS website, you will see that a significant number of the Algebra videos are also listed in PreA. In many ways it is almost like spiral review where the foundations are then built upon further. Depending on how much concept work had been done in Visual Math, it might be beneficial to surf around eBay, Amazon, and Half.com to see if you could find a cheaper copy of PreA about. As long as the previous program did not focus on algorithm and really spent some time on concept/proofs then she should be fine. ETA: I should say the first half of the Algebra book aligns pretty well, not the entire thing. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

snowbeltmom Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 The pre-algebra book wasn't available for my boys, but my daughter used it the year it was released. I am glad that I had my daughter complete the pre-algebra book before jumping into algebra. The pre-algebra book provides an excellent foundation for not just algebra, but number theory, counting and probability, and geometry as well. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Kathy in Richmond Posted October 21, 2014 Share Posted October 21, 2014 Before you decide, take a look at the post-test for the AoPS prealgebra book. Is she comfortable with those problems? That will give you the best feel for what she'd be missing by skipping ahead to the algebra text. Snowbeltmom brought up a very good point above. The prealgebra text is also pre-geometry, number theory, and counting & probability (TOC). If you're interested in continuing with AoPS in future years, or if she might participate in activities like MathCounts, she'd do well to lay a strong foundation in all of those areas now. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Kristini2 Posted October 22, 2014 Author Share Posted October 22, 2014 Thanks so much!! I hadn't considered that the pre-algebra would cover entire subjects -- geometry, number theory, etc. -- not covered in the algebra text. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

EndOfOrdinary Posted October 22, 2014 Share Posted October 22, 2014 The PreA book does an intro to all of the different factions of the AoPS curriculum. So there is an entire chapter which covers the basics of the first bit of Counting and Probability, the basics of Geometry, the basics of Number Theory. If you daughter has no desire to learn any of that, no biggie. If she is all set to use the other Intro books, then no biggie. If you were taking a much more standard progression and not going to branch out into the other books, then it might be something to think about just to expose her to the other math that is out there. FWIW: My son did an entire year of PreA and beginning Algebra with a traditional program before using AoPS PreA. He hates busy work and repetition, and the AoPS book did not feel that way at all. It was so vastly more. She could do two years of PreA without even feeling it. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Julie of KY Posted October 23, 2014 Share Posted October 23, 2014 My oldest went from SM 5 to AoPS Algebra with no difficulty, but he's a math wiz. My other kids start with AoPS Prealgebra. I've tutored some that I start with introducing topics with Prealgebra and then run the Algebra book somewhat behind. A strong student can skip the rest of the algebra sections in the Prealgebra book if desired, but as others have said the prealgebra book includes several chapters on other topics not specifically related to algebra - number theory, intro geometry, counting, probability, statistics. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Diviya Posted October 24, 2014 Share Posted October 24, 2014 You could absolutely try Algebra first - I did that and it was obvious she wasn't ready for it. But....I really love the Prealgebra book - you may be able to go through some chapters pretty quickly, but I don't think it will feel like needless repetition. For what it's worth, I think the AOPS pretests are ridiculously easy, and to me they seem to have no actual relation to whether your child actually is ready for the course, unless you know you have a super self-motivated child! The post tests are more useful, as Kathy mentioned above. Generally speaking, I would think an 11 year old could manage the online class for Prealgebra, but not the Algebra if it's her first time doing AOPS. Mine took the Algebra online class at 11, but she had already worked through that part of the book on her own the year before. She took the class to review and solidify. I don't think you were thinking of the online classes, but my kids both enjoy them, so it may be worth thinking about. Sorry, probably this was incoherent, but hopefully there is something useful in there. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

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