How are incoming 9th graders placed into math classes?
Students will be placed into math courses based on their previous 8th grade math course. Please see our district website page
info for Incoming 9th grade students for enrollment information and math placement guidelines.
How Does MiddleSchool Acceleration Affect a Student’s Schedule?
If a student completes Algebra during the 8th grade, their math schedule could be:

Pathway Option #1

Pathway Option #2

9th

Geometry Enriched

Geometry Benchmark

10th

AS Algebra II

Algebra II

11th

PreCalculus

Finite and Trigonometry

12th

Calculus AB or BC (with summer)

PreCalculus

If a student completes Geometry during the 8th grade, their math schedule could be:

Pathway Option #1

Pathway Option #2

9th

AS Algebra II

AS Algebra II

10th

PreCalculus

PreCalculus

11th

Calculus AB or BC (with summer)

Calculus AB

12th

AP Statistics or Multivariable

Calculus BC (no summer)

Students may enroll in two math classes by taking AP Statistics either junior or senior year.
What is the difference between Geometry Enriched and Geometry College Prep (Benchmark)?
Both Geometry courses are designed to meet the standards of the common core and satisfy the “C” requirement for the University of California and California State University campuses. Each course, Benchmark and Enriched, use the same textbook, Discovering Geometry by Michael Serra, and cover the same chapters of study.
Geometry Enriched  (primarily 9th grade students)
 Class focuses on student discovery of geometry concepts.
 Students use geometry software and tools to prove postulates and theorems.
 Students apply knowledge and engage with higherlevel thinking tasks and problemsolving.
 As reported on the MA rigor chart, the class rigor is a 4 and the average nightly homework is 30 minutes.
 Students enrolled in Geometry Enriched typically are on a pathway to complete Calculus by the end of their 4year math career at MA.
 Students who pass with a B or higher will move to AS Algebra II
Geometry College Prep (primarily 9th, 10th, and 11th grade students)
 Class utilizes more direct instruction strategies with guided notes, practice quizzes and practice tests.
 Class reviews key geometry and algebra concepts.
 As reported on the MA rigor chart, the class rigor is 3 and the average nightly homework is 20 minutes.
 Students enrolled in Benchmark Geometry typically are on a pathway to complete Finite Math and Trigonometry or Statistics by the end of their 4year math career at MA.
 Students with a C or higher will move on to Algebra II
What is the difference between AS Algebra II and Algebra II?
Both Algebra courses are designed to meet the standards of the common core and satisfy the “C” requirement for the University of California and California State University campuses. They both satisfy the third year math requirement for AG eligibility and use the textbook Big Ideas by Ron Larson.
AS Algebra II (primarily 9th and 10th grade students)
 AS Algebra II is meant for the student who enjoys the challenges of a rigorous mathematics course, has excelled in previous mathematics courses, and is driven to take Calculus in high school
 Students apply knowledge and engage with higherlevel thinking tasks, problemsolving and assessments.
 Class moves at a fast pace with students independently solving and applying concepts.
 Students need to advocate for themselves and clarify their understanding regularly as new content is presented daily.
 Course includes trigonometry unit required for PreCalculus.
 As reported on the MA rigor chart, the class rigor is a 4 out of 5 and the average nightly homework is 35 minutes.
 Students enrolled in AS Algebra II typically are on a pathway to complete Calculus by the end of their 4year math career at MA.
 Students who pass with a B or higher will move to PreCalculus.
Algebra II (10th, 11th and 12th grade students)
 Class utilizes more direct instruction strategies with guided notes, practice quizzes and practice tests.
 Content is challenging and requires mastery of algebra concepts
 As reported on the MA rigor chart, the class rigor is 3 out of 5 and the average nightly homework is 30 minutes.
 Students with a C or higher will move on to Finite Math and Trigonometry or Statistics.
What additional topics are covered in AS Algebra II that is not a focus in Algebra II?
AS Algebra II’s coursework includes advanced topics and key trigonometric concepts. Mastery of these concepts help to prepare students for PreCalculus and the pathway to calculus. In addition to the topics covered in all Algebra II classes, AS topics include the focus and directrix of a parabola, turning points of polynomial functions, sums of infinite geometric series, binomial distributions, right triangle trigonometry, the unit circle, measuring angles in radians, trigonometric identities, solving trigonometric equations, and graphing sine, cosine, tangent, secant, cosecant, and cotangent functions, the sum and difference formulas for sine, cosine, and tangent and trigonometric proofs using basic trigonometric identities. The additional topics are covered in Finite and Trigonometry, the course after Algebra II.
Is It A Good Idea To Take Algebra II during the Summer?
We do not recommend taking Algebra II during the summer. The only course that we may recommend for summer is Geometry. There are no options for Algebra II acceleration within the district. Students will have to go to either a community college or a private school summer program. The summer programs will not offer the same challenge or rigor as they will have less instructional time than during a normal school year. Please see our acceleration page for full details.
What is the policy on making a level change?
If a student wants to move from AS Algebra II and Algebra II, for example, they can request the change in the first six weeks of the semester with no penalty on their permanent transcript. See the school calendar on mabears.org for the specific deadline. Level changes will be allowed when there is room in the receiving course. After the six week period, students can make level changes at the quarter, but they will receive a WP (withdraw pass) or WF (withdraw fail) on their permanent transcript for the class they are exiting. After the quarter, students will not be able to request a level change, but they can drop the course and receive the WP or WF on their permanent transcript, and become a Teacher’s Assistant or Student Clerk.
For the first semester only, 9th graders will be allowed to level change during the first six weeks of the semester and at the quarter without receiving a WP or WF. Level changes are dependent on space availability in the receiving course. If students drop or withdraw from a course, after the last day to drop without penalty (see mabears.org for specific dates), they will receive a WP or WF.
What math courses are eligible for level changes?
Math Courses Eligible for Level Changes
Algebra I

Algebra Readiness
(Only for 9th graders and a signed inperson waiver is needed)

Geometry Enriched

Geometry

Geometry Benchmark
(College Prep)

Integrated Math
(Student can only move from Geo to Int Math, not the reverse.)

AS Algebra II

Algebra II

PreCalculus

Finite and Trigonometry
(Student can only move from Precalc to Finite, not the reverse.)

AP Statistics

Statistics

What math activities can my student access over the summer? Do you have support resources?
Our
summer resources list provides links to fun games, activities, and maththemed movie ideas. It also includes resources to review and prepare students for their next level of math.
What is the difference between AB Calculus and BC Calculus?
AB covers the first 6 chapters of our Calculus book. BC covers the entire Calculus book plus one more chapter. Specifically, BC calculus content includes Advanced Integration techniques, Polar, Parametric and Vector Calculus, and MacLaurin and Taylor Series. Each class prepares students for the corresponding AP exam, either AB or BC.
Who Should Take BC Calculus?
BC Calculus is considered to be the toughest AP exam of them all. It is a great course for students who are considering engineering, science, mathematics, business and economics majors in college.
Why is there not an extra grade point for precalculus and multivariable calculus?
We are unable to offer the bonus point for the UC AG requirements for our precalculus and multivariable calculus classes. To be eligible for a bonus point, the class has to be either an AP course or a course where a school offers two levels of a course, honors and nonhonors. Neither multivariable or precalculus meet either of these two requirements.
Why are the advanced classes so challenging?
Our AS and AP pathways are very challenging and offer a very rigorous curriculum. These classes are preparing our students for collegelevel curriculum while they are still enrolled in high school. They are also preparing them for the successful completion of the Advanced Placement Exams. Our advanced classes require students to engage in higherlevel problemsolving, synthesize several topics and apply their learning. It is common practice at all levels of math, that questions asked on tests and quizzes ask for application and higherlevel thinking. This can be perceived as harder than the daily practice of learning a single math concept. The math department offers a variety of classes, at various levels, to try to meet the learning needs of the school population.
What tutoring options are available?
MA offers several afterschool free tutoring options in the library. Please
see link for hours and details. We have MA math teachers, instructional associates, and peer tutors available for help in all math courses. In addition, individual teachers offer time to help students. Students should contact their teacher to arrange a time.
What Textbooks are used at MA?
Course

Textbook Title

ISBN

Algebra I

Big Ideas by Ron Larson

9781608408383

Algebra II

Big Ideas by Ron Larson

9781608408405

Calculus

Calculus of a Single Variable 2nd edition by Earl Swokowski

0534939244

Finite Math & Trigonometry

Precalculus with Trigonometry Functions and Applications by Paul Forester

0201813564

Geometry

Discovering Geometry by Michael Serra

9781465255020

Integrated Math

Integrated Mathematics (McDougal Littell)

0618073949

Multivariable Calculus

Multivariable Calculus 7th edition by James Stewart

9780538497879

Precalculus

Precalculus Enhanced with Graphing Utilities, 5th edition, by Michael Sullivan

0716733706

Statistics

The Practice of Statistics by Daniel Yates

0716733706

What Kind of Calculator Should I Buy for MA?
As a matter of equity, MA limits graphing calculator usage on Quizzes and Tests to the list of calculators approved for the AP Calculus and AP Statistics exams.
Texas Instruments

TI (continued)

Casio

Casio (continued)

Casio (continued)

TI73
TI80
TI81
TI82*
TI83/TI83 Plus*
TI83 Plus Silver*
TI84 Plus*
TI84 Plus Silver*
TI84 Plus C Silver*
TI85*

TI86*
TI89*
TI89 Titanium*
TINspire/TINspire CX*
TINspire CAS/TINspire CX CAS*
TINspire CMC*
TINspire CAS CXC*

FX6000 series
FX6200 series
FX6300 series
FX6500 series
FX7000 series
FX7300 series
FX7400 series
FX7500 series
FX7700 series
FX7800 series

FX8000 series
FX8500 series
FX8700 series
FX8800 series
FX9700 series*
FX9750 series*
FX9860 series*
CFX9800 series*
CFX9850 series*
CFX9950 series*

CFX9970 series*
FX 1.0 series*
Algebra FX 2.0 series*
FXCG10 (PRIZM)*
FXCG20*

HP

HP (continued)

Radio Shack

Sharp

Other

HP9G
HP28 series*
HP38G*
HP39 series*
HP40 series*

HP48 series*
HP49 series*
HP50 series*

EC4033
EC4034
EC4037

EL5200
EL9200 series*
EL9300 series*
EL9600 series*
EL9900 series*

Datexx DS883
Micronta
Smart2
