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Math II

Prealgebra and Advanced Topics – Year 2

Age Level: Grades 3, 4, 5. Location: Edina Community Center, Room 315.  Instructor: Karl Bunday, 2007 Edyth May Sliffe award recipient for middle school mathematics coaching, parent workshop director for Epsilon Camp 2012, 2013, and 2014. Textbook: Prealgebra by Richard Rusczyk, David Patrick, and Ravi Boppana (2011), useful for Year 1 and Year 2 students. Dates: Saturdays 8 July, 15 July, 22 July, 29 July 2016 (July half-term, four weeks total) or Saturdays 5 August, 12 August, 19 August, 26 August 2016 (August half-term, four weeks total). Fee: $125 for July or August half-term (per section), $225 for full summer course (each section each half term).

Description: Accelerated prealgebra course for bright learners curious about mathematics, with much emphasis on foundations of higher mathematics and many problems selected from mathematics competitions. The Prealgebra and Advanced Topics course follows a syllabus, in development since 2005, that over two years covers most essential topics in a formal course in prealgebra and mathematical problem-solving contests for pupils of late elementary age, with additional topics from upper-division university-level mathematics. The course lays a foundation for further advanced study of mathematics to the highest and most challenging level, and also delves into topics that are interesting and intriguing and not usually taught in the school curriculum. 

On Saturdays during the two summer half-terms (the four-week July half-term or the four-week August half-term), the 9:00am section will be the "year 2" (Math II) section, covering general problem-solving techniques such as finding patterns in problem situations, listing information as a problem-solving technique, diagramming to focus on essential details of a problem, and working backwards to generate possible solutions. Problems for the Math II summer course come not just from the assigned textbook but also from other sources around the world, especially for the fourth week of each four-week half-term. The year 2 half-terms for Math II in summer 2017 cover the same topics, so choose either July or August classes based on your convenience in scheduling. The summer courses at either level (Math I or Math II) are good introductions for first-time students to the school-year ECAE courses. All ECAE mathematics courses especially emphasize building a foundation for numeracy in adult life, proficiency in secondary school mathematics, and success in university mathematics courses.

Placement Test Instructions: The textbook publisher has an online placement test that shows what level is expected for starting the textbook, that is starting Year 1 of the two-year Prealgebra and Advanced Topics (PAT) course. My Course Placement Test illustrates many of the topics that are covered during ECAE’s Math Year 1 class. The Year 2 section of the course assumes most of that content as background. Students can join either the Year 1 or the Year 2 section in the middle of the school year if they are ready.The Course Placement Test prints out as six pages. Calculations are to be done by thinking, or by pencil and paper, without any use of an electronic calculator, abacus, or slide rule. Encourage your child to do as much work, and to show as many steps, on the Course Placement Test as can be done in one hour, skipping ahead to problems farther along in the test if that helps complete more questions. The last question is also important. Once your child is done, please send the completed test by scanning-and-emailing to the instructor.