About the Books
In the Summit Math books, math problems are called scenarios. This wording is used because in this curriculum, students learn by completing a sequence of scenarios, designed to guide their mind toward specific ideas in mathematics.
The scenarios in each book are arranged to show students that new math concepts are related to previous concepts they have already learned. The ordering of the scenarios encourages them to arrive at their own understanding first and to reinforce what they have learned as they progress farther along in that book.
An Answer Key is provided for each scenario to give students immediate feedback. After checking the Answer Key, the student can then decide what to do with that feedback: move ahead, ask another student for help, or ask the teacher for more guidance.
Some scenarios are marked with a star symbol. These scenarios are there to provide additional challenges for students who work at faster paces. If students skip scenarios marked with a star, they will still learn the core concepts of that book.
Benefits for Teachers
Less full-class lecturing = More 1-on-1 helping. Move around the room as students learn.
Use them to differentiate instruction. Diverse students naturally learn at diverse paces. While students work through the scenarios in each book, their readiness can determine their pace.
Use them to facilitate cooperative learning groups. When students share their ideas, the teacher no longer needs to be the only person students go to for guidance.
The books arrange topics in a logical order. Use them to help you write your lesson plans, or let them be your lesson plan.
When these books guide student learning, the class size can feel smaller, because some students may need minimal guidance.
The books spiral back to previous content, making students look back as they move forward.
Benefits for Students
Students can learn math at different paces and they can work in groups to learn with other students.
Do some students need more time to think? Using these books, they can take more time.
Do some students get bored waiting to move on? They can go ahead and move on to new challenges.
Students write in the books, reducing the challenge of taking notes while listening to a teacher talk.
Some students can learn each topic without additional guidance from a teacher. Students who need extra help can get 1-on-1 help from their teacher or work through their classmates to resolve confusion.
Benefits for Tutors
These books are written to guide students through topics in a logical order, so they are easy for tutors to use. Just open the book and start guiding.
As a student progresses through a book, a tutor can see when a student gets stuck and add supplemental instruction as needed.
After a tutoring session, a student can try to keep progressing through the book and complete scenarios on their own. At the next tutoring session, a tutor can address any challenges that occurred and then pick up where that student left off.
After a tutoring session, a student can reinforce learning using the Homework|Extra Practice section of the book.
About the Author
Alex Joujan is a faculty member at The Pingry School in Basking Ridge, NJ where he has been teaching since 2011. During this time he has been the recipient of two awards for his teaching. Alex started writing his own resources in 2013 to improve the learning experience in his classroom. This project developed into the Summit Math series of books, so named to reflect that his curriculum is like hiking; although hiking requires effort and persistence, people can hike at different paces and still reach the summit of the hike. Similarly, Summit Math books are designed to guide students toward a mastery of each topic, while allowing students to learn at their own pace.
Alex was born in Mukinge, Zambia and moved to Chattanooga, TN when he was 5. His family moved to TN after his father died in a car accident, and he is grateful to the many people who guided him through his childhood. His decision to pursue a career in teaching was partially motivated by his appreciation for the impact that his teachers had in his life. In 2005, he graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor's degree in Mathematics from Muhlenberg College. In 2006, he earned his M.S. Ed. from the University of Pennsylvania. In 2006, he was also awarded a 5-year teaching fellowship from the Knowles Teacher Initiative.
Alex enjoys writing, spending time with friends and family, and being active outdoors. He hopes his curriculum writing efforts play a part in improving the learning experience for both teachers and students.
Alex Joujan, M.S. Ed.