“She is not making many mistakes at all and it is all making sense, so she's pretty happy about math these days.” ~ Homeschool mother
“I never used to understand the concepts in my book from 5-8 grade. So when you explain it so clearly, it makes me want to jump to tell everyone that I understand it.” ~ Algebra I student
“We wanted to let you know also that we got his end of year testing score and he scored higher in his math than he ever has.” ~ Homeschool mother
“Thank you for a mostly non-painful year of Algebra! Under your teaching, I have learned/understood so much more than I thought I ever could. I look forward to delving into Advanced Math with you next year.” ~ Algebra II student
The key to excelling at math is the same as the key to enjoying math: understanding math. That is the goal of our Algebra I and Algebra II classes. What sets them apart from other algebra classes? With biweekly 75-minute lectures that include teacher demonstration problems and student practice problems, and with an instructor whose background teaching logic and philosophy emphasizes thorough explanation and true understanding, your student will finish with a grasp of the how and why of algebra, prepared to move on to higher levels of math—and perhaps even enjoying it more than they thought possible.
These classes use Saxon Math's Algebra I or Algebra II, Third Edition (that's Third, not Fourth--see note below). Saxon Math is one of the best math programs out there because of its focus on comprehension. New ideas are introduced in small, logical steps and continuing practice reinforces important concepts, in contrast to the "learn it and forget it" approach of some other programs. Unfortunately, Saxon Math can be hard for a teacher who lacks confidence or time to explain mathematical concepts to the student, which is where this class comes in. The clear in-class instruction combines with the great incremental learning framework provided by the textbook to give you the best of both worlds. Please note that we still use the Third Edition, even though a Fourth Edition was recently published. Mathematical principles don't exactly change between editions, and we feel that the Third Edition is better organized and clearer in a number of ways.
The class meets online for 32 weeks, twice per week, on Mondays and Thursdays for 75 minutes. Our online software allows for live lecture and questions from students [watch a recorded sample], including in-class practice assignments. In addition to instruction on whatever new concepts are introduced in the week's lessons in the textbook, the class includes time to discuss and review particular questions or concepts with which individual students are struggling. Outside of class, students will work on practice problems from the textbook, noting any confusion for discussion during class time. Please purchase the textbook, tests, and student answer key. Parents are not expected to grade any of the work.
The Saxon curriculum is designed so that students don't need a calculator until near the end of Algebra I, but it is convenient to have one before then. Students don't really need anything more than a scientific calculator, but a graphing calculator like the TI-83 offers a number of benefits, including a larger screen which can help catch errors and the ability to keep using it in higher math classes. If you want to save money, the instructor will tell students where to download a free graphing calculator program for their computer.
All students will need some way to scan or take detailed pictures of their work to send electronically to the teacher for weekly tests and to ask questions about homework. A scanner is one easy option. Almost any digital camera can also take sufficiently detailed pictures, as well as most smartphones and tablets. CamScanner is a great app that makes it very easy to take pictures of pages and convert them to PDFs for easy emailing. If you are interested in the class but not sure how your child could send scans, email the instructor and we'll almost certainly be able to work something out.