 # 7th to 8th grade math placement

Dear Families,

It’s spring! This letter is to inform you of your student’s math placement options for 2021-22.  As students finish seventh grade, there are two math options: 8th Grade Math and Algebra 1.  Please read this document carefully to make an informed choice.

1. 8th Grade Math links previous math understandings to the foundations of algebra, geometry and statistics.  This course supports students to succeed in high school and beyond.  Students taking this course will be on track to take the required Algebra 1 and Geometry in high school and will have access to high level math courses such as Math Analysis and AP Statistics as a senior.  See pathway at the end of this document.

Topics include:

• Use Radicals and integer exponents.

• Make connections between proportional relationships, lines and linear equations.

• Analyze and solve linear equations and pairs of equations.

• Understand function notation and use functions to model relationships.

• Apply congruence and similarity.

• Understand and use Pythagorean Theorem.

• Investigate patterns of association in bivariate data.

If you would like your child to take 8th Grade Math, no further action is necessary.

1. Acceleration to Algebra 1:  Students in 8th grade who are well prepared in math may choose to skip 8th Grade Math and take Algebra 1.  Algebra 1 is a challenging full year high school course. Students succeeding in this course in 8th grade will have the option of taking high levels of math in high school, including AP Calculus AB or AP Statistics (see pathway at the end of this document). Per Policy 2410P, high school courses taken and passed in middle school are automatically given high school credit and recorded on the high school transcript, unless requested otherwise.  See the LWSD High School Guide (https://tinyurl.com/ybtwzacg) for more information.

Topics include:

• Write, interpret, and translate between various forms of equations. This includes linear, simple exponential, inequalities, and functions.

• Interpret arithmetic and geometric sequences as linear functions. Describe linear relationships and interpret linear models.

• Use the laws of exponents. Create quadratic and exponential expressions to solve equations including systems, inequalities, and quadratics.

• Identify the real solutions of quadratic equations.

1. Data Considerations for Acceleration:  Some families and students may be interested in acceleration to Algebra 1 as 8th grade students. To plan for a successful experience in math next year and beyond, here are data points that can help predict student success if considering the accelerated placement into Algebra 1 as an 8th grade student. At minimum, a student considering Algebra 1 should have:

• Score of 3 or 4 on the two most recent Math Smarter Balanced Assessments (SBA)

• Grade of B+ or higher on one or more semesters of math from 6th grade

• Grade of B+ or higher on the Semester 1 report card from 7th grade

• On Track for being at standard by the end of the year on FastBridge screener.

In addition, students who intend to take Algebra 1 as an 8th grader should complete the 8th grade course in ALEKS, LWSD’s online math learning environment, prior to the start of the 2021-22 school year.

Note: Current test scores are available to all families under the Test Scores tab in Skyward.

1. Planning with your student: When considering math placement, discuss the following questions with your student:

• What are my student’s math goals?

• What is my student’s anticipated course sequence through middle and high school?

• Has my student demonstrated both procedural fluency and deep understanding of 7th grade math topics?

• Is my student able to ask for help when they do not understand?