Middle School Mathematics

Mathematics

Department Philosophy

TVT Mathematics Department aims to instill habits of mathematical thinking that will prepare students for further inquiry in math and to attain the computational skills needed for everyday life. Students are taught to approach mathematics from multiple perspectives, including numerical, graphical and symbolic. In addition to simply satisfying the metrics of each course, the teachers will focus on student discovery through individual explorations. Students are encouraged to form learning groups that offer a natural context for practicing mathematical communication. Our students are not just highly skilled, but also demonstrate enthusiasm and clear understanding.

The goal of TVT Mathematics is for all students to study mathematics successfully at a pace and depth appropriate to their individual needs. The program is flexible in that it provides the challenge and interest necessary for those who want a sound mathematical background on which to base further study while satisfying the needs of students for whom mathematics is not their primary orientation. To this end, TVT Mathematics offers different tracks of courses to its students.

Honors Track: This track is built for the exceptional mathematics student who is capable of moving not only at a swift pace but also at incredible depth. Proof technique and advanced problem-solving skills are taught and problems are frequently approached first from the abstract level.

AoPS Track: The AoPS track is built for the exceptional mathematics student who is both capable and interested in exploring and executing the Mathematics curriculum from the perspective of depth. The AoPS approach favors very, very deep analytical approaches to topics in Mathematics, sometimes moving more slowly than Honors because of the depth of analysis expected from the student. AoPS track students are passionately committed to the study of Mathematics for its own sake and are intrigued by (and want to explore) critical problems in Mathematics.

The following chart shows the anticipated sequencing of mathematics at the middle school level (grade nine is also included in the table to show how each sequence transitions to upper school mathematics).

Mathematics Placement

Because success in mathematics depends upon students sequentially mastering material, TVT Mathematics takes placement into its courses very seriously. Student placement is determined during Semester 2 by the entire department, which meets to discuss the individual needs of each student. Factors in placement decisions are student grades, standardized test results, teacher recommendation and, the results of placement tests.

Grade 6 Math 6 or Accelerated Math 6 AoPS Pre-Algebra
Grade 7 Foundations for Pre-Algebra Pre-Algebra Accelerated Pre-Algebra AoPS Introduction to Algebra (Part 1) / AoPS Introduction to Counting and Number Theory
Grade 8 Pre-Algebra Algebra 1 Algebra 1 Honors AoPS Introduction to Algebra (Part 2) / AoPS Introduction to Geometry
Grade 9 Algebra 1 Geometry Geometry Honors AoPS Intermediate Algebra

List of 3 frequently asked questions.

  • Grade 6

    Math 6
    Students in Math 6 complete their study of mathematics at the elementary level by strengthening their numeracy skills, especially in work with whole numbers, fractions, integers, decimals and percentages. Considerable emphasis is placed on mastering the order of operations and beginning to understand how to apply the order of operations to more abstract situations. Students are introduced to pre-algebra concepts, including equation solving.
    Grade Level: 6
    Prerequisite: In lieu of prerequisites, placements are made based on placement exams, CTP-4 scores and teacher recommendations
    Accelerated Math 6
    Students in Accelerated Math 6 encounter a fast-paced review of basic numeracy skills, especially in work with whole numbers, fractions, integers, decimals and percents. The class then places considerable emphasis on mastering the order of operations and beginning to understand how to apply the order of operations to more abstract situations. Students are introduced to preliminary algebraic concepts.
    Grade Level: 6
    Prerequisite: In lieu of prerequisites, placements are made based on placement exams, CTP-4 scores, and teacher recommendations
    AoPS Pre-Algebra
    AoPS Pre-Algebra, using the methods and practices typical to Lower School Beast Academy mathematics, includes a thorough exploration of the fundamentals of arithmetic, including fractions, exponents and decimals. Beginning topics in number theory and algebra, including common divisors and multiples, primes and prime factorizations, basic equations and inequalities and ratios are introduced. The year ends with a focus on notions of percent, square roots, a thorough exploration of geometric tools and strategies, an introduction to topics in discrete mathematics and statistics and a discussion of general problem-solving strategies.
    Grade Level: 6
    Prerequisite: Beast Academy 5 or Accelerated Math 6, placement test, and interview
  • Grade 7

    Foundations of Pre-Algebra
    This course is designed for the student who requires additional work in mastering the basics of number skills and the order of operations. Extensive work with fractions, decimals and percentages is included as well as basic equation solving. Students are also given individual projects designed to strengthen their skills in areas where they need additional practice.
    Grade Level: 7
    Prerequisite: Math 6 or Accelerated Math 6
    Pre-Algebra
    Pre-Algebra develops a student's computational skills while assisting students as they develop a strong sense of the foundations of mathematics, including a substantial section on solving linear equations. The goal of the course is a student's mastery in core areas so that students may take subsequent mathematics courses with confidence. Students who complete this course successfully will next take either Algebra I or Honors Algebra, depending on their placement at that time.
    Grade Level: 7-8
    Prerequisite: Foundations for Pre-Algebra, or 2 of 3 of the following: teacher recommendation, pass Pre-Algebra placement exam, 80% or better in Math 6
    Accelerated Pre-Algebra
    Students continue to master basic skills: order of operations, numeracy skills including work with decimals, fractions, and signed numbers. At the same time, themes from Algebra and Geometry and problem solving are woven through each section. Students who complete this course successfully will next take either Algebra I or Honors Algebra, depending on their placement at that time.
    Grade Level: 7
    Prerequisite: 2 of 3 of the following: teacher recommendation, pass Pre-Algebra placement exam with distinction, grade of 93% or better in Math 6 or 77% or better in Accelerated Math 6
  • Grade 8

    Algebra 1
    Algebra 1 develops the mathematical background necessary for all subsequent mathematics courses. Students build on their numerical proficiency as they encounter symbolic manipulation and polynomial arithmetic. Substantial units include linear and quadratic equations, factoring, algebraic fractions and radicals. Basic graphing in the Cartesian plane is also covered.
    Grade Level: 8
    Prerequisite: Pre-Algebra or Accelerated Pre-Algebra
    Algebra 1 Honors
    Students in Algebra 1 Honors complete their mastery of polynomial arithmetic begun in Foundations of Algebra. Substantial units on linear equations and their systems, factoring, algebraic fractions, graphing, linear and nonlinear inequalities, exponents and radicals are learned. Students are introduced to not only the language of mathematics but also the rigors of mathematical discourse. The Fundamental Theorem of Algebra and its corollaries are broached at the end of the course.
    Grade Level: 8
    Prerequisite: 2 of 3 of the following: teacher recommendation, pass Algebra 1 placement exam with distinction, grade of 90% or better in Pre-Algebra or 77% or better in Accelerated Pre-Algebra. (Note: Courses above the level of Algebra 1 Honors are listed in the Upper School course catalog)
TVT Community Day School is a TK-12 Independent Community Day School in Irvine, CA
Founded in Loving Memory of Naomi Gelman Weiss