Understanding Math Sequencing
In regards to the mathematics courses offered here at George Washington High School, there are three paths that most freshman will fall into. The first path is one where a student begins in Algebra I because they have had limited to no background in Algebra and need to ensure they have a sound foundation. From this course, a student may choose Geometry or H/PB Geometry. From there the student will have two choices their junior year – to enter the IB diploma program and take Math Studies their junior and senior years or to follow the College Prep path and take Advanced Algebra II their junior year and then a multitude of options their senior year including concurrent enrollment and AP classes.
For those students who have some Algebra background but have not completely demonstrated proficiency, something that is of utmost importance for a high school student hoping to be successful in mathematics, they would take H/PB Integrated Math 2. During this class their freshman year, students will spend 2/3rds of the year completing Algebra at an accelerated pace, then spend the remainder of the year beginning Geometry. Their sophomore year, students will take H/PB Integrated Math 3 where they will complete Geometry and get a solid foundation of Advanced Algebra II. From here, students have two choices – enter the IB diploma program where they would traditionally take Math SL their junior and senior years or to follow the College Prep path and take Pre-Calculus their junior year then an AP or Concurrent Enrollment class their senior year.
The third path begins with students taking H/PB Geometry their freshman year as they have mastered Algebra I, and then taking H/PB Advanced Algebra II their sophomore year. Following this, students can enter the IB diploma program where they would traditionally take Math HL their junior and senior years or they can follow the College Prep path and take Pre-Calculus their junior year then an AP or Concurrent Enrollment class their senior year.
Regardless of the path, a freshman at any level will have the option to get into the IB diploma programs and/or AP courses their junior and senior year in mathematics. What we need to make sure though is that all students have a proper foundation in mathematics, one that allows them to be successful regardless of the path taken.
– Joseph Bolz | Math Department Chair and Instructional Partner