Advice pls & thx: Algebra I AFTER Geometry? How wld it look to adcoms? Other issues?

<p>No--that's the problem. All the academic courses at this selective admissions high school are honors. (That is one reason he considered transferring to another selective admiss. h.s. in our city -- a h.s. which also offers non-honors courses. However, that is a huge school and he is rather shy and just beginning to make friends at the current school so he does not want to transfer.) BTW, I love your name -- I think of "Calm mom" when I read it.</p>

<p>OK, I'm realizing I'm missing the part about what your son wants...other than the mention that he is really stressed out and considering transfer.</p>

<p>Here's what the parent in me says: Too much stress is bad. Nothing in your posts even remotely suggests that your son has his heart set on attending an Ivy -- so there's no particular reason for him to burn himself out in high school. He should be able to enjoy these years, have time for relaxation and friends, etc. - as well as school. I mean -- he sounds like a smart kid who will have plenty of college options if he ends up graduating from a somewhat less demanding (and probably less prestigious) high school. </p>

<p>But I don't know your kid -- and I don't know what your school choices are -- so I really don't know the answer in your situation. I just know that sometimes the "best" schools for academics really aren't the "best" for learning and growth. </p>

<p>Do you know who your son's teacher would be if he opted for the slower, Algebra II track? What about for Algebra I? Sometimes a teacher can make all the difference in the world -- either in terms of bringing clarity to a difficult subject, or else in terms of making a classroom more relaxed environment. Is it possible that part of your son's geometry problems this year are a result of having a poor teacher -- perhaps one of those people who is very good at math but not so good at explaining it to others? </p>

<p>I don't know how much flexibility you've got. My d. was able to sometimes arrange for full credit for independent study situations where she was able to work on her own. There is a concept of "self-paced" math that might be a better fit for your son, especially as you say he's been working with a good tutor -- but it doesn't sound as if your son's school has that flexibility. Sometimes community colleges offer self-paced math -- the way those work is that the students work through assigned units at their own pace.</p>

<p>I believe that the best way for a student to actually learn math is to take as much time as needed to fully understand and grasp one concept before moving onto the next. Without that its like building a house of cards -- the foundation just isn't there.</p>

<p>Here's another insight:</p>

<p>I was chatting with DS's friend who fast tracked through all maths in H.S. and took AB and BC Calc in H.S. and so placed into Calc 3 in college. Guess what happened. He bombed the Calc in college and had to drop the class. The prof asked, "did you take Calc 2 here?" and was not terribly helpful towards the student who tried to get help before dropping the class. Moral of the story - slow down. It does no good to race forward just to look good on paper. Do you want to LEARN? Or just look smart? There is a difference.</p>

<p>edit * topic for another day : AB BC math different from college level intro/intermediate calc?</p>

<p>I know ppl who never took calc in H.S. and then graduated with Math/Engineering degrees, both back in the 70's, 80's and recently. We live in a society that encourages kids to look smart at the expense of real learning, imho. </p>

<p>I do agree that some kids do fine in algebra but bomb geometry and vice versa, but if there was any struggle in basic algebra the best thing to do is go back and firm up the foundation.</p>

<p>Does the school offer Algebra over the summer? That might be helpful.</p>

<p>I was on pace taking Alg I in the 8th grade like most of my peers. I did horribly though, and I opted to take Alg I again as a freshman. I did really well but it wasn't an honors class. When most of my friends were in Alg II Honors as a freshman, I was still taking Alg I regular. It really bothered me. I wanted to be in calculus by my senior year like the majority of my friends. Instead of taking regular Alg II as a sophomore, I convinced my guidance counselor to allow me to take both Geometry Honors and Algebra II Honors as a sophomore. </p>

<p>My parents were really against and so were my counselors. The only person on my side was my Alg I math teacher. I finally got the OK, but that next year was incredibly difficult. I had to learn at an honors pace and I not only had to worry about mastering one concept at a time, but rather two. It was okay, though, because these subjects are almost entirely independent of one another. Well I made high B's in these classes and went on to Pre-Calc. Aced the class. Made a 96-100 range with just a modicum of effort. Took AP Calc AB my senior year. It took more work, but I made a 96 average in the class.</p>

<p>What I am trying to say is... listen to your child. If he wants to take Alg II next year, let him. Sometimes kids can far better understand their capabilities than their parents or teachers. If I had allowed my parents to push me into Alg II regular my sophomore year, I know I wouldn't have done as well.</p>

<p>Staying with your classmates is a huge deal in high school. You can feel majorly stupid when you're stuck in precalc your senior year while all of your friends are discussing calc concepts. </p>

<p>If you allow your child to do what he wants in the end, he can't get mad at you when things get tough. He can learn to deal with his own choices. You're setting him up for an incredible learning opportunity. One that has nothing to do with academics.</p>

<p><a href="algebra%20I%20in%20junior%20high">/quote</a>
honors geometry (freshman)
honors algebra II trig A/B (soph)
honors pre-calc A/B (junior)
nothing (senior)
OR
(algebra I in junior high)
honors geometry (freshman)
honors algebra I (sophomore)
honors algebra II trig A/B (junior)
honors pre-calc A/B (senior)

[/quote]
</p>

<p>I thought I read earlier in the thread that there was a slower track for Algebra II/Trig available (is that the class you are showing)? Since he did well in Algebra I, I would opt for Alg II/Trig in the slower track since he's just not a math type. There's no shame in that - I'm assuming he's not looking to major in college in engineering or physics.</p>