Frequently Asked Questions

Why are Summit Math books printed as smaller paperback books instead of larger textbooks?

1. Textbooks can be heavy. Summit Math books are easy to carry around. 2. Textbooks can be long, giving the impression that they will never be completed. Students enjoy reaching the end of Summit Math books and knowing that they have "reached the summit" of that particular book.

Are these books a complete curriculum?

Yes. They teach typical topics in the Algebra 1 and Algebra 2 sequence. The author is also working on writing books that cover Geometry, Advenced Algebra, Trigonometry and Precalculus concepts.

  • The books are written to prepare students for success on the SAT, ACT and other standardized tests.
  • The content is designed to align with the Common Core State Standards, though it is not officially recognized in this way.

How can a teacher use Summit Math books in their classes?

1. If desired, the teacher can teach a short lesson to introduce a topic, but this may not be needed. The students can open their books and start the first scenario. If they work in cooperative learning groups, they can discuss their ideas as they progress. 2. The teacher can move around the room and observe them as they work. 3. When students need help, they can ask another classmate or call the teacher over to help them. 4. If several students need guidance on the same scenario, the teacher can gather them together for a mini-lesson. 5. When students finish a scenario, they can check their answer at the back of the book and see if they need more guidance. 6. Students learn at different paces. Those who move at a faster pace can be called on to offer guidance to their classmates, if desired. They may find that they enjoy the challenge of teaching. 7. Students who work at similar paces can be grouped together to facilitate collaboration. 8. Teachers can implement other activities to complement the learning that occurs as students progress through their Summit Math books.

How is each book organized?

The first half of the book is the Guided Discovery Scenarios, which are designed to guide a student through the process of learning each topic. The second half of the book is the "Homework & Extra Practice Scenarios." These scenarios reinforce what the student learns in the Guided Discovery section. Each section has an Answer Key. The Answer Key for the Guided Discovery Scenarios is approximately in the middle of the book. The Answer Key for the Homework & Extra Practice Scenarios is at the end of the book.

Why does each Summit Math book cover a topic instead of a full course?

Every school teaches math a little bit differently. Teachers should be able to buy the topics they actually teach, instead of buying a textbook they may not be able to use in its entirety. Summit Math books provide flexibility for teachers who want to customize their curriculum.

When do teachers give assessments if students advance at different paces?

One option is to let students take assessments when they get to certain points in the book. This approach requires that a teacher is comfortable letting students take assessments at different times. Another option is to give the entire class an assessment when every student has reached a particular point in that book. This approach requires that a teacher marks points in each book at which they want to assess learning.

What can a teacher do if some students advance quickly through a book while other students advance slowly?

A teacher can get creative with managing various student paces. Some possible strategies include: 1. Encourage students who advance quickly through a book to play a more active role in the class as an extra explainer. Students deepen their own understanding when they try to teach someone else what they have learned.
2. Find additional math tasks for students to engage in when they finish a section before other students in the class. 3. For students who advance more slowly, identify scenarios they can skip without missing core concepts.

How can a parent find out if their child is ready to start learning the topics in a particular book or Series?

You can have your child take the Algebra 1 or Algebra 2 Placement Test to see if they are ready to start the books in that particular series. Algebra 1 Placement Test Algebra 2 Placement Test

Can Summit Math books be used by homeschooling families or for enrichment?

Summit Math books make it easy to learn math at home without direct instruction from a parent. These open-and-learn workbooks are designed to make math approachable. Each book is like a path that guides a student through their learning. An Answer Key is included to give them immediate feedback as they advance through each book.​ If a student uses these books to learn math at home, and they come to a point where they need extra instruction, they can subscribe to teaching videos that guide them through the scenarios in the Guided Discovery section of each book. These videos give students access to direct instruction if they would like an experienced teacher to guide them through a book. See the Teaching Videos

Is there a pacing guide for homeschooling parents?

Yes. To see the pacing guide, click the link below: Pacing Guide

Is this a spiral or mastery-based curriculum?

Summit Math is a blend of spiral and mastery. Each book leads a student toward mastery, and in order to achieve that, it may spiral back if looking back on previous topics will help them get their brain ready for a new idea. Some spiral curricula cover topics lightly and then move on to other topics before eventually coming back around to previously seen topics. These books spiral to the extent that new topics sometimes use and apply topics from previous books, but each book is essentially mastery-based. Each book covers a specific topic, starts simpler, and then gradually gets more complex. By the time a student reaches the end of a book, they have learned a lot about a particular topic. There are 15 books in the Summit Math Algebra 1 and Algebra 2 Series and within those 15 books there are many times that books spiral back to topics in previous books in order make sure students understand what they previously learned really well before they go on to learn more advanced concepts that build on those earlier ideas.

How should a student use the teaching videos?

The teaching videos walk a student step-by-step through each problem in the Guided Discovery section of each book. The Guided Discovery section is the first half of the book and the problems are designed to gradually build learning. When a student is using the Summit Math books, they should try to solve a problem on their own first, but if they need or want direct instruction, they can go to the video that explains whatever they are currently stuck on and get a step-by-step explanation. The videos provide direct teaching when needed, but whenever a student can solve a problem on their own first, that can be good for developing their sense of independence and confidence as a learner. That being said, whenever a student is stuck, they need to get unstuck somehow or they will want to give up, so that’s where the videos can be useful. When a student is watching a teaching video, they should work along with the video until they think they can continue on without help. They can then pause the video and see how far they can go without help. As soon as they need help again, they can continue using the videos.


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