It’s that time of the year again in New York. The wonderful month of July has past us by and we are now in the thick of getting ready for the coming academic year. Many New York schools start right before or after Labor Day weekend, so the countdown has definitely begun. I know that many of our members outside of New York have already begun their school year. Either way, here at eMATHinstruction we hope that everyone has had a wonderful summer vacation and is charged up for the year ahead.
We have been busy this summer as well. For those familiar with the site, you may have noticed the look of it has changed. We’ve kept all the resources in the same places, but hopefully made them even easier to use. Our excellent website designer Stephen Suess (no relation to the good Doctor) will continue to make upgrades as the year progresses. So, watch for more improvement. As always, if you find anything amiss, please email me and we will try to fix it.
One of the very exciting developments we had this year was the addition of our first Spanish language text. We created a Spanish Language edition of Common Core Algebra I, Curso Común de Álgebra I. This translation was edited by my good friend Yamir DeJesus-Decena. She is an excellent math teacher of all levels at Arlington High School who also happens to be fluent in Spanish. Many thanks to Yamir for a great job on the editing of the book. Right now only the workbook is available. We have not yet created an electronic answer key in Spanish nor have we posted the Spanish version of the files. Pricing on the book is the same as for the English version.
We just put out the latest round of add-ons to each course. We are keeping the add-ons in Unit order, so the news ones are mixed in with the older ones. For Common Core Algebra I Add-Ons we’ve rounded out our Form B assessments by creating makeups for Units 1 and 2. All units now have two assessments each (at least). Common Core Algebra II Add-Ons were a bit more complicated. We added a new lesson on Equivalence and the Calculator. We thought students could use even more work with how to use their calculator to check algebraic manipulations. We also added a Form B assessment for Unit 2. We will continue to add Form B assessments to Common Core Algebra II to make sure each unit has at least one. For the Algebra 2 with Trigonometry Add-Ons we also created a lesson on Using Tables on Your Calculator. As well we added a lesson where students use the online graphing calculator Desmos to explore the slope-intercept and point-slope form of a line.
Finally, there is Common Core Geometry. Geometry is brand new this year, so it has far fewer resources than the other courses. In fact the “add-ons” for Common Core Geometry this year will be the Unit Reviews and Unit Assessments for the course. For this month, we’ve added the reviews and assessments for Units 1 and 2. Next month we will add them for at least Unit 3 and possible also Unit 4, depending on timing. We plan to have all of these done by the March 2018 newsletter.
This year will be an interesting one for us at eMATHinstruction. We plan to work on some performance task assessments for various courses, work on new lessons based on curriculum changes coming to New York State (does anyone really know when these will be implemented?), and we will start to develop a prototype of an electronic only textbook app. That last piece is very exciting. We believe that within 5 years very few schools will be using paper and will move exclusively to tablet/computer based learning. We want to be able to deliver our materials in that format when the time comes.
For now, I’ll let those who still are on vacation get back to it. Enjoy what time you have left, if you are still off. For those already back in the classroom, have a great start to your year. As always, let me know if you have any comments. I can be reached at: [email protected].