Posted on

eMath May 2020 Newsletter

May has arrived and so has spring in upstate New York. It seems like only yesterday that we were being hit by a blizzard, when in reality it was actually last week. Neither weather nor quarantine at home with kids has stopped us here at eMathInstruction. We’ve been busy creating the last round of add-ons for the year as well as putting the finishing touches on the first editions of our new N-Gen Math series for grades 6 through 8. More on those later. First, to the add-ons for this month.

In our Common Core Algebra I Add-Ons we round out the assessments and exit tickets for the course. We bring you the Unit 10 (Statistics) Form D Assessment. We also have the Unit 11 (Functions and Modeling) Exit Tickets as well as its Form D Assessment. So many assessments to choose from now.

For Common Core Geometry Add-Ons this month we bring you two new resources. First, we have a Unit 10 (Measurement and Modeling) Progress Quiz. We plan to add many more of these quizzes next year. We also bring you the Form C Assessment for Unit 10.

Common Core Algebra II Add-Ons this month begin with the Unit 12 (Probability) Form D Assessment. We then bring you the Unit 13 (Statistics) Exit Tickets and Form D Assessment.

Finally, our Algebra 2 with Trigonometry Add-Ons this month have four new additions. First we have the Unit 12 (Statistics) Exit Tickets and Form C Assessment. We also bring you the Unit 13 (Sequences and Series) Exit Tickets and Form C Assessment.

Besides a lot of work on add-ons, we’ve also been busy with finishing the first editions of our N-Gen Math middle school books. Our plan is to have the workbooks and answer key memberships available for sale no later than June 15, 2020, so just a month from today. The Teacher Plus Answer Key memberships will include online access to the answer keys for the lessons and homework sets. It will also include online access to Unit Reviews for each unit and access to Microsoft Word documents for each resource. In the late summer we will be releasing some Unit Assessments and will continue to release Unit Assessments for the middle school courses as the school year progresses next year.

We’ll put out an additional post once we’ve gotten everything uploaded and our courses are ready to be used. For now, it’s time I get back to work on them. Take care everyone, stay healthy and safe during these challenging times.

Posted on

eMath April 2020 Newsletter

So, we find ourselves in week #6 of quarantine here is upstate New York. I imagine wherever you’re at, you’ve been homebound for just as long as we have here at eMath. We’ve had a lot of increase in our work since schools have closed because of how many are moving to remote learning models. Besides trying to keep up with many emails asking about remote learning, we’ve also been busy with add-on creation as well as finishing the first editions of our middle school N-Gen Math series. Let me first discuss our latest round of add-ons.

In our Common Core Algebra I Add-Ons this month we bring you some mid-unit quizzes as well as a Form D assessment. We bring you the Unit 7 (Polynomials) and Unit 8 (Quadratic Functions and Their Algebra) Mid-Unit Quizzes this month. These could even be helpful during these times to use as review assessments or finals review materials. We also bring you the Unit 9 (Roots and Irrational Numbers) Form D Assessment.

For our Common Core Geometry Add-Ons this month we have two new resources. First, we bring you the Unit 9 (Circle Geometry) Form C Assessment. We also offer the Unit 10 (Measurement and Modeling) Exit Tickets. We’ve found that teachers are making creative use of the exit tickets during this period of online learning.

We have three new resources for you in our Common Core Algebra II Add-Ons. First, we have the Unit 11 (Circular Functions) Exit Tickets. We also have the Unit 11 Form D Assessment. Finally, we also bring you the Unit 12 (Probability) Exit Tickets.

This month in Algebra 2 with Trigonometry Add-Ons we have the Unit 10 (Exponential and Logarithmic Functions) Form C Assessment. We then bring you the Unit 11 (Probability) Exit Tickets and Form C Assessment.

Since I last wrote, we have been busy finishing up the first edition of our middle school courses. We have now finished and uploaded all videos for the three courses. We hope that they help with some of the remote instruction that is happening now. We are also working on finishing the first version of the workbooks, the answer keys, and the unit reviews. We will begin to create assessment materials for all three courses in the early summer.

There has been a lot of news out of the education world, including the cancellation of the New York State Regents exams and the delay of the Next Generation Standards implementation by one year. Here at eMathInstruction, we will be facing all of these challenges with our eyes on the future as well as the present to make sure we have materials ready for when and how teachers will need to use them.

Posted on

Revised Next Generation Timeline and June 2020 Regents Exams

Well, if you didn’t know already, there were huge announcements put out this morning (April 8, 2020) regarding this year’s Regents exams in New York State along with graduation requirements and the timeline for implementation of the Next Generation Mathematics Learning Standards. We wanted to make everyone aware of this information, given that most of us are in quarantine and maybe wouldn’t get this information in a timely manner. Here is the link to the article out of NYSED:

http://www.nysed.gov/news/2020/state-education-department-issues-guidance-graduation-and-course-requirement-changes-due

First, lets start with Regents exams. We already knew that they and the 3-8 tests had been cancelled. What NYSED released today was direction for districts regarding how this effects Regents graduation credits. Basically, NYSED is allowing school districts to give students a Regents credit as long as they pass the course that would have ended in the exam. Here is the relevant passage from the article:

Personally, I think this is an excellent move by NYSED and the most logical thing to do given the uncertainty that we all face. It still gives kids the motivation to pass the course they are in and to try their best during these times of remote learning, but it takes the pressure off of both them and their teachers to prepare them for an August or January examination.

Now, in another bombshell, and I will admit a surprise to me, NYSED also pushed the entire implementation of the Next Generation Mathematics Learning Standards off for another year. This is not only true for the 3-8 courses/assessments but also for the high school level exams. Now the first set of 3-8 assessments aligned to the Next Gen Standards will not go into place until the spring of 2022 and the first administration of the Next Generation aligned Algebra I exam will not occur until June of 2023. Although it is hard to almost fathom, your school could conceivably still be giving the Common Core Aligned Algebra II exam in June of 2026. Yes, you read that right, June of 2026!!! Here is an image of the updated implementation timeline:


Here is the link to the revised timeline:

http://www.nysed.gov/common/nysed/files/programs/curriculum-instruction/next-gen-mathematics-implementation-timeline-revised-april-2020.pdf

Here at eMathInstruction we have been planning on the timeline as it was yesterday for awhile. We aren’t in anyway sure of what this means for our own curricular products, other than we will have additional time to work on our Next Generation aligned high school courses (a whole extra year in fact). We will work to update all of our fantastic members as we solidify our own plans.

For now, stay safe, stay sane, stay at home, and most importantly, stay healthy!!!

Posted on

eMath March 2020 Newsletter

What a crazy last few weeks it has been. School districts have been closing left and right for weeks or even over a month in order to “flatten the curve” as it is being called. We just posted an article detailing the steps we are taking here at eMathInstruction to help districts as many move to a remote instruction model in the coming days. Part of how we are going to help, though, is by continuing to publish materials in our monthly add-ons and by continuing to record videos for our middle school series of courses. Let’s discuss the add-ons first and then I’ll give you an update on our middle school progress.

In Common Core Algebra I Add-Ons this month we have the Unit 8 (Quadratic Functions and Their Algebra) Form D Assessment. We also bring you the Unit 9 (Roots and Irrational Numbers) and the Unit 10 (Statistics) Exit Tickets. We will put out our last CC Algebra I exit tickets, for Unit 11, in April. I’m hoping that teachers might be able to creatively use the exit tickets in a remote learning situation. Maybe they could be used for informal assessment by the student.

For Common Core Geometry Add-Ons this month we have a few resources for Unit 8 (Right Triangle Trigonometry). First we bring you a practice set of exercises on solving for missing sides and missing angles in right triangles using the trigonometric ratios. This is a straight up fluency worksheet that gives students some nice practice setting up trig ratios and then solving them. We also have the Unit 8 Form C Assessment. Finally, we bring you the Unit 9 (Circle Geometry) Exit Tickets.

This month we are brining you a lot of resources in the Common Core Algebra II Add-Ons. CC Algebra II is a very long course, as anyone who has taught it knows. In order to keep pace with the Form D assessments and exit tickets, we bring you five resources in CC Algebra II this month. We begin with the Unit 8 (Radicals and the Quadratic Formula) Form D Assessment. We then have the Unit 9 (Complex Numbers) Exit Tickets. Of course, that means that we then bring you the Unit 9 Form D Assessment. We then have the Unit 10 (Polynomial and Rational Functions) Exit Tickets and Form D Assessment. We wanted to make sure we got all of these resources to you now, so that if you need them while students are learning from home, then you have them at your disposal.

In Algebra 2 with Trigonometry Add-Ons, we have a similar situation to CC Algebra II. In this case, we bring you four resources, starting with the Unit 8 (Trigonometric Algebra) Form C Assessment. We then have the Unit 9 (Trigonometric Applications) Exit Tickets and Form C Assessment. Finally, we also bring you the Unit 10 (Exponential and Logarithmic Functions) Exit Tickets.

We are coming along on our Next Generation aligned middle school courses. For those of you not in New York State, the Next Generation Math Standards are what New York is renaming the Common Core Standards (with slight modifications). We now have our N-Gen Math 6 and N-Gen Math 7 books done in their first editions, with sample copies available in early May. Our N-Gen Math 8 book is not far behind. We are busy also recording videos for all three courses. It looks like by the end of March we will finish all videos for both Math 6 and Math 7. Math 8 videos will be finished by mid-April. We hope that these videos will help with remote learning this year.

We are starting to receive orders for our middle school products. Although we are happy to get the orders, we won’t be able to process them until late June. Let us know if you have any questions by emailing Orders@emathinstruction.com. We will be posting cleaned up version of all of the middle school files in June as well standards alignment documents this summer.

That’s it for now. I hope that everyone out there, teachers, students, administrators, and parents, all stay healthy and sane during these coming weeks. We can do so much for each other in our communities, large and small, that will help our country as a whole defeat the common threat we now face. Take care and be well.

Kirk

Posted on

Remote Learning with eMathInstruction

The past week has been interesting and trying.  Recently, we learned of several states that have closed school.  In states such as New York, many schools are now closing for two weeks to over a month.  Please know that we at eMath consider every teacher out there to be a hero. You are likely being asked to prepare to do the impossible, teach students remotely.  We are here to help and support you in any way we can.  We have been getting many questions about how eMathInstruction materials can be used so wanted to send out answers to a few common questions.

Q: Can files be posted?

A: We have several different types of files and will address each independently.

  • Lessons and homework sets that are already available for free download may be reposted though we greatly prefer that you just post the appropriate link to our website.  This will likely be easier for you in the long run.
  • Unit reviews are only available with the purchase of a membership and may be reposted to closed systems only such as Google Classroom
  • Answer keys and assessments are only available with the purchase of a membership.  These are our most sensitive files.  These may only be posted to closed systems inaccessible to the broader internet (such as Google Classroom).  We ask that these most sensitive files be removed from the closed system after they are needed. 

Q: Why can certain documents such as assessments, answer keys only be posted to closed systems?

A: There are several reasons we prohibit the posting of these items to traditional websites and web pages. 

  • The first and most important reason is academic integrity.  Students are quite internet savvy.  Students from outside of your school will find the files you post and use them to cheat.  You would not want your students finding answers on the internet so we ask that you be considerate to teachers and students on the other side of the country.
  • eMath Instruction provides a plethora of files for free.  Unfortunately we cannot provide everything for free or we would not have the funding to continue to provide new resources.  If our paid content is posted to the internet where anyone can find it we lose out on the ability to sell our material and therefore continue to do what we do.

Q: How can videos be easily accessed?  Can they be downloaded?

A: All of our videos are on YouTube.  Videos for Algebra I, Geometry and Algebra II are also on TeacherTube.  Unfortunately the file size of videos is quite large and impractical to provide off of the internet.  We understand that many folks struggle with access to internet due to living in a remote location or due to other family circumstances.  At this point, in order to view videos, access to the internet is needed.  Below are the links to our YouTube and TeacherTube channels.  Videos are also accessible from our website.

Q: Can we still purchase books?  How can we get them to students if our school has already closed?

A: Yes.  We have books available.  We can work with your school to possibly ship books directly to students if needed.  Please contact us directly to discuss.  If your school has not yet closed and you think you may need books, your best bet is to order them as soon as possible. 

If there are any other questions you have or any other way we can support you, please feel free to reach out to us.  You can reach us at orders@emathinstruction.com or info@emathinstruction.com.  We are here for you.  We hope you all stay safe and healthy.

Kirk and Shana Weiler

Posted on

Reordering N-Gen Math™ 8 and Middle School Videos

We’ve been getting great input this year on our new middle school courses that are aligned to the new Next Generation Math Standards (coming next year to New York K-8). I’ve had some great conversations with teachers who are using the courses. One of the things I heard from multiple teachers was that they would like to see algebra moved to the beginning of N-Gen Math™ 8 so that equation solving could be a greater part of the geometry units.

One of the new skills that students learn in 8th grade algebra is how to solve equations with variables on both sides. Since our original ordering had this skill taught in Unit 4, we didn’t incorporate it into our Units 1 through 3 (on geometry). We decided to remedy that and move our algebra unit to Unit 1 and then incorporate those algebraic skills into our geometry units (which became Units 2 through 4). Because of this reordering, we had to remove some problems that had been in the algebra unit, but we were able to beef up the algebra in many of the geometry problems.

We also created some new lessons in geometry based on feedback. We created an additional lesson in the Tools of Geometry on angle terminology associated with parallel lines (alternate interior, exterior, same side, corresponding, etcetera). We added a few lessons in our unit on Transformations. One of these looks at congruent angles formed by parallel lines through the lens of rigid motions. The other lesson comes at the end of the unit and gives students lots of practice using algebra to model geometry problems.

One of the very nice consequences of the reordering is that our unit on similarity now comes immediately before the unit on linear functions and graphs of lines. Given that in 8th grade we justify the slope of a line based on similarity, this flow of topics is much more natural. I think the changes to N-Gen Math™ 8 will make it more complete and will strengthen both the algebra and geometry skills of the students. I’d like to thank Elizabeth Agen of Golding Middle School and Beth Goldberg of Linden Avenue Middle School for the feedback on the order of the topics. I had some very good back and forth discussions with both teachers that really got me to think harder about the best sequence of topics in the course.

We’ve also begun to record and post the videos for the middle school courses. It’s going to take us quite some time to finish them as we can only do so many in a day and there’s other work to be done. My hope is to have them all recorded and posted by next spring. We’ll be recording more videos next week and then will need to take some time off for the fall AMTNYS conference up in Rochester. For now, keep watching as we continue to post the first few units of all three courses.

Posted on

TI-Nspire Directions for Algebra I and Geometry by Jeanne Oliveira

Our good friend and longtime contributor, Jeanne Oliveira, from Germantown CSD has created an amazing collection of TI-Nsprire directions that go with the eMath Curriculum for both Algebra I and Geometry. Some of these we’ve posted in the past. But now we have the full collection. These include both PDF versions of the instructions and TNSP versions. I’m going to post them by unit in zip folders for easier download.

Algebra I:

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 01 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 02 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 03 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 05 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 06 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 07 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 08 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 09 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 10 Nspire Instructions

eMathInstruction Alg I Unit 11 Nspire Instructions

 

Geometry:

eMathInstruction Geometry Unit 05

eMathInstruction Geometry Unit 06

eMathInstruction Geometry Unit 07

eMathInstruction Geometry Unit 08

eMathInstruction Geometry Unit 09

eMathInstruction Geometry Unit 10

 

Jeanne spent a lot of time on these and plans to do a set for Algebra II as well. We’d like to thank her for sharing these materials with the wider math education community. Thanks Jeanne!

Posted on

Regents Live Review 2019

In just two weeks students all around New York State will sit down to take their (Common Core) Algebra I Regents exam. As we’ve done in the past two years, I will be doing a Live Review session for each of the three major high school math Regents exams (Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II).

I will be going over questions from past Regents exams. The question packets for each Regents are given below. Fair warning: they are extremely long (around 20 pages each)!!!

Common Core Algebra I Live Review Problems 2019 (pdf)

Common Core Algebra I Live Review Problems 2019 (MS Word)

Common Core Geometry Live Review Problems 2019 (pdf)

Common Core Geometry Live Review Problems 2019 (MS Word)

Common Core Algebra II Live Review Problems 2019 (pdf)

Common Core Algebra II Live Review Problems 2019 (MS Word)

We likely will not make it through the entire packet on any one of the nights. I think it really would take about 5 hours to do a complete review.

The reviews will be shown on YouTube Live (Kirk Weiler Channel) and Instagram Live (follow @emathinstruction). The video will be much better on the YouTube Live platform. We mainly will have Instagram Live going for students to comment (whatever it takes to get them to the review ;-).

Can’t wait to “see” you all there.

Posted on

eMath May 2019 Newsletter

Wow! Is it May already? Right about now teachers in New York are finishing curriculum and heading for the big push to the New York State Regents exams in mid June. We are here to help with more add-ons and Live reviews in June. Before we get to those, let’s discuss the latest and last round of add-ons for this academic year.

In Common Core Algebra I Add-Ons we bring you the Form C Assessment for Unit 10 (Statistics) and Unit 11 (A Final Look at Functions and Modeling). These two assessments mean that we now have three unit tests per unit in Algebra I. We’ll try to add a fourth next year.

For Common Core Geometry Add-Ons we have an introductory lesson for Unit 10 (Measurement and Modeling) along with Unit 10’s Form B Assessment. To begin, we have created a Lesson 0 for the unit on Rates, Densities, and Conversion Factors. We felt that there was quite a bit of work in this unit on applying concepts like density. This lesson reviews these various ideas early in the unit. Use this for kids who struggle with ratio and rate concepts. Our Form B for Unit 10 now means we have two unit tests per unit in Geometry. More to come.

Common Core Algebra II Add-Ons this month also bring two Form C Assessments. We now have a Unit 12 (Probability) and Unit 13 (Statistics) Form C. It’s especially nice to have more statistics questions for this very challenging unit.

Finally our Algebra 2 with Trigonometry Add-Ons also feature two additional assessments, both Form B. First we have the Unit 12 (Statistics) Form B and then we have our Unit 13 (Sequences and Series) Form B.

Lots of assessments this month!

Now for the fun part. We are yet again holding our YouTube Live and Instagram Live Review sessions this year for the New York State Regents Exams. For each exam we will be going over old Regents test questions for 3 hours. Here’s our schedule for this year:

Algebra I (Algebra 1):  Tuesday, June 18, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Geometry: Wednesday, June 19, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Algebra II (or Algebra 2): Thursday, June 20, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.

We will be broadcasting on our YouTube Channel (click link) and on our eMathInstruction Instagram Live account. YouTube will be much better quality, although commenting will be allowed on Instagram (only go there if you can stand constant comments from teenagers).

We’ll put out more information in the coming two weeks, including the problem sets we will work through at each of the sessions. For now, have a great Memorial Day weekend!

Posted on

eMath December 2018 Newsletter

Ah, its the last week of classes here in New York before the big break. Kids and teachers here are restive, but happy that one of the longer break is on the horizon. Just last minute tests, office parties, and school concerts to get through. Maybe our hypercube logo in a Santa hat is just what you need:

Or maybe you also just need that vacation. I know I do.

We’ve got the typical add-ons to discuss but first I wanted to update all of you on the latest timeline for New York State switching to the Next Generation Math Standards. If you are not teaching in New York, you may want to skip to the add-ons. However, if you have been confused about when the Next Generation standards are going to be implemented, read on.

As most teachers in New York know, these standards are very close to the Common Core Standards. But, like many states, the political backlash against those standards, earned or not, has made them untenable, at least in name. The timeline for adoption of these standards, of course, is dictated on when they will be assessed. That timeline has been fairly transparent for quite some time at the K-8 level. Here’s the graphic and link from the NYSED.gov website:

http://www.nysed.gov/curriculum-instruction/next-generation-learning-standards-and-assessment-implementation-timeline

The most important part of this graphic is the final piece (with my horrible highlighting):

At eMath we have been working under the assumption that the changes due to the Next Generation Standards in Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II would all go into effect in the Fall of 2020 and then assessed for the first time in June 2021. NYSED hasn’t updated that graphic on their website for quite some time (at least 6 months) and to my knowledge has not made any solid decision. But, NYSED is speaking to math teachers, especially in the form of responding to question from the Association of Math Teachers of New York State (AMTNYS). Here is the relevant question (from AMTNYS) and the reply (from NYSED):

I love the fact that “new” is in quotes. Here is the full document:

2018 AMTNYS Math Questions

So, it looks like at the very earliest the changes at the high school level will be assessed in June of 2022 (which seems like a century away to me). And it seems like that will only be for Algebra I. So, those of you holding your breath for 3 by 3 systems to be taken off the New York State Algebra II Regents exam could be waiting until the 2023-2024 school year. Let that sink in for a minute (or more).That’s five years and countless numbers of Regents exams between now and then.

The upshot of all of this for users of eMathInstruction courses is that we will not introduce these changes to our texts until at least the Fall of 2021. This, of course, is subject to change should NYSED decide to implement changes to the assessments earlier, but that would be disastrous for them.

O.k. Onto the add-ons for the month.

In Common Core Algebra I Add-Ons, we bring you two Form C assessments, one for Unit 5 (Systems of Linear Equations and Inequalities) and one for Unit 6 (Exponents, Exponents, Exponents). We will continue to put our these additional assessments year in and year out since we get a lot of positive feedback on them. Of course, it never hurts to have makeups and alternate exams.

In Common Core Geometry Add-Ons this month we have two sets of practice problems. First, we have a Unit 5 Coordinate Geometry Formula practice sheet. This is a short set of problems that give students a chance to practice what they’ve learned about the three fundamental coordinate geometry formulas (slope, midpoint, and distance). This is a good extra assignment for the average student. For Unit 6 we bring you a nice set of quadrilateral practice problems. These aren’t proofs, just algebraic and numerical problems that ask kids to use facts about the various quadrilaterals they’ve been studying.

For Common Core Algebra II Add-Ons we again bring you two Form C Assessments. We bring you the third version of the Unit Assessment for Unit 5 (Sequences and Series) and the third for Unit 6 (Quadratic Functions and Their Algebra).

Finally, for Algebra 2 with Trigonometry Add-Ons we have an assessment and a practice set of problems. We bring you the Form B Assessment for Unit 6 (Polynomials and Rational Functions). We also have another resource for Unit 7 (The Circular Functions). We created a set of fairly basic trigonometric graphs (no horizontal shifts) and ask the students to create their equations based on either the sine or cosine functions. This is a nice sheet to give kids to practice immediately after they have learned all of the basic sinusoidal graph parameters.

So, in other eMathInstruction news, we will be paying a visit to Edward R. Murrow high school in Brooklyn, New York this spring for our annual school visit. I’m excited to meet the students and teachers at Edward R. Murrow and amaze and awe them with some math that’s more fun than serious. Next month we will have some exciting news regarding new courses coming to eMath just in time for those Next Gen Standards I was talking about before. So, I’ll leave you with this teaser of an image:

Have a great holiday season! Enjoy the break, the rest, your family, and your friends. 2019 here we come!