Algebra 1 is often called a gateway course since understanding of its content is fundamental to success in future math and science courses. The thinking processes that are found in Algebra 1 pave the way to clear thinking for all students and provide access to many career opportunities.
California has placed an emphasis on this core curriculum and wants all 8th graders to have an algebra course. Teachers have found that it normally takes several years for students to completely master the content of a traditional Algebra 1 course, so many students will repeat their 8th grade algebra class. Much of the understanding and appreciation of the course content comes during subsequent years. It’s often true that an Algebra 2 teacher spends time reteaching the Algebra 1 content that wasn’t mastered fully. For most high school students algebra will be their most challenging course, and they should plan on spending quite a bit of time outside of class on it. For the large majority of students it is true that just spending more quality time on their mathematics work will pay dividends in understanding; there is no substitute for this focused time.
Mathematics Content Standards for California Public Schools contains overviews of grade-level curriculum for Kindergarten through grade 12. All grade-level standards can be found here.
These are the cornerstones of success in Mr. L’s classes.