The single greatest influence on the quality of the education that a student receives are the decisions that the teacher makes on a daily basis!
Since teachers are the key to the quality of education that a student receives, math teachers at La Paz are committed to continually improving our instruction. Central to that commitment is our spirit and practice of collaboration. We have common daily prep periods to share and create more effective ways to teach mathematics. We do this by setting goals, giving common assessments, and design engaging lessons.
21st Century Skills
Our math department embraces the importance of teaching 21st century skills. 21st century skills are thinking and communicating brought on by the advancement in technology. Our intentionally designed math lessons provide ample opportunities for students to think critically in supportive environments. We create classroom communities that foster multiple learning modalities. Our student-centered lessons encourage students to problem solve and apply their learning to real-life situations. In addition, technology is a key component of our instruction. Since all teachers have a class set of Chromebooks, we thoughtfully and strategically incorporate the use of technology to enhance student learning.
Course of Study
The goal of the La Paz mathematics program is to provide all students equal access to important, meaningful mathematics in a supportive environment that promotes success and growth of understanding.Course descriptions for each grade level follows:
Math 7 covers all the Math 7 standards. The instructional time is focused on four critical areas: (1) developing understanding of and applying proportional relationships, including percentages; (2) developing understanding of operations with rational numbers and working with expressions and linear equations; (3) solving problems involving scale drawings and informal geometric constructions and working with two- and three-dimensional shapes to solve problems involving area, surface area, and volume; and (4) drawing inferences about populations based on samples. Students also work towards fluently solving multi-step equations with rational coefficients. Upon completion of this course, students are adequately prepared for Math 8 the following year.
Math 7 Honors.
Math 7 Honors is an accelerated course that covers all the Math 7 standards as well as the majority of the Math 8 standards. This course is intended for the student who is able to move through the mathematics quickly and still master the full range of mathematical practices, content and skills. Instructional time in the Math 7 Honors course focuses on the following grade 7 critical areas: (1) developing understanding of and applying proportional relationships, including percentages; (2) developing understanding of operations with rational numbers and working with expressions and linear equations; (3) solving problems involving scale drawings and informal geometric constructions and working with two- and three-dimensional shapes to solve problems involving area, surface area, and volume; and (4) drawing inferences about populations based on samples. In addition, the following critical areas from Grade 8 will be included: (1) formulating and reasoning about expressions and equations; (2) analyzing two- and three-dimensional space and figures using distance, angle, similarity, and congruence. Upon successful completion of this course, students are adequately prepared for the rigor of Algebra 1 in 8th grade.
Math 8 covers all the Math 8 standards. instructional time is focused on three critical areas: (1) formulating and reasoning about expressions and equations, including modeling an association in bivariate data with a linear equation, and solving linear equations and systems of linear equations; (2) grasping the concept of a function and using functions to describe quantitative relationships; (3) analyzing two- and three-dimensional space and figures using distance, angle, similarity, and congruence and understanding and applying the Pythagorean Theorem. Students also work towards fluency with solving simple sets of two equations with two unknowns by inspection. Upon completion of this course, students will be adequately prepared for Algebra 1 in 9th grade.
Algebra I – Grade 8.
This is a full-year, formal Algebra 1 course for 8th graders. It differs from the high school Algebra 1 course in that it includes a portion of the Math 8 standards and all the Algebra 1 standards; therefore, a faster pace of instruction and learning is required. This course is designed to give students a foundation for all future mathematics courses. The fundamentals of algebraic problem-solving are explained. Students will explore: foundations of Algebra, solving equations, solving inequalities, an introduction to functions, linear functions, systems of equations and inequalities, exponents and exponential functions, polynomials and factoring, quadratic functions and equations, radical expressions and equations, and data analysis and probability. The fundamentals of algebraic problem-solving are explained. Throughout the course, Common Core standards are taught and reinforced as the student learns how to apply the concepts in real-life situations. Upon successful completion of this course, students will take Geometry in 9th grade.
Math 8 Essentials
This class promotes academic success in all disciplines, with the focus being on math. The goal of this course is to support students in Math 8 and develop fundamental skills for independent success throughout Intermediate school and beyond. There is targeted math instruction as well as an emphasis on organizational and study skills. All students in this class are given an online subscription to Aleks online software, which designs individual learning pathways for each student based on their mathematical strengths and weaknesses.
The 8 Standards of Mathematical Practices
The following list, known as the 8 Standards of Mathematical Practice, are the "habits of mind" that La Paz math students posses. These mathematical practices are married to the content standards and our daily learning objectives.
The 8 Standards Mathematical Practice:
- Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them
- Reason abstractly and quantitatively
- Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others
- Model with mathematics
- Use appropriate tools strategically
- Attend to precision
- Look for and make use of structure
- Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning
"The Standards for Mathematical Practice describe ways in which developing student practitioners of the discipline of mathematics increasingly ought to engage with the subject matter as they grow in mathematical maturity and expertise throughout the elementary, middle and high school years."
-Common Core State Standards for Mathematics, page 8
La Paz Leopard Math Teachers:
Mrs. Brooks, Math 7 Honors, and Math 7
Mrs. Chia, Math 7 Honors, and Math 8
Mrs. Pogue, Math 7 Honors, and Math 7
Mr. Wakayama, Math 8 Honors, Algebra
Mrs. Yacoubian, Algebra, Math 8 and Math 8 Essentials
- Math 7: Big Ideas Math Course 2; Big Ideas Learning
- Math 7 Honors: Glencoe Math Accelerated; McGraw-Hill
- Math 8 : California Math Course 3; McGraw-Hill
- Algebra 1: Big Ideas Math Algebra 1; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt