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AP Calculus

Prerequisite:  Math Analysis ,Precalculus, or Integrated Math III with Teacher Recommendation.

BookCalculus, 2nd edition by College Preparatory Mathematics.  Please visit www.cpm.org for student and parent support, including online homework help.  We do not have hard bound books from this publisher at this time.  We will be working from packets given out for each chapter.

Required student materials: 

  • Notebook
  • Paper (graph paper or lined notebook paper)
  • Pencil and eraser
  • Graphing Calculator  We will use the TI84 calculators from Texas Instruments in class.  You may use a different kind of graphing calculator, but you will be responsible for learning to use it on your own.  The list of calculators that are allowed on the AP Calculus exam is available at http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/ap/calculus_ab/calc.html Graphing calculators can be purchased at most major superstores, office supply store, and from many web sites. Please see me if financial considerations prevent you from being able to purchase a graphing calculator for home use.                                                                 

 

Optional Materials:

  •   Quarter inch graph paper
  • Colored pencils
  • A good AP Calculus review book to prepare for the AP Exam (Barron’s and Princeton Review are examples of good preparatory books.  They are available in book stores and online).

                                               

Course description:  This is a college level mathematics class that is comparable to a semester of calculus in colleges and universities.  The course will prepare the student for the Advanced Placement Calculus AB exam in May. 

There are four general categories of knowledge we will study in this course:  Limits, Derivatives, Definite Integrals, and Indefinite integrals.  We will also study many applications of these topics.

            The philosophy of AP Calculus is to develop a solid conceptual foundation of these four topics in order to integrate them and apply them to many problems.  “Broad concepts and widely applicable methods are emphasized.  The focus of the course is neither manipulation nor memorization of an extensive taxonomy of functions, curves, theorems, or problem types” (2004-2005 Workshop Materials for AP Calculus).  Although students should aim for computational and manipulative competence, their focus should be on conceptual understanding.

            There are nine goals that the College Board has carefully defined for AP Calculus:

1.       Students should be able to work with functions represented in a variety of ways: graphical, numerical, analytical, or verbal.  They should understand the connections among these representations.

2.       Students should understand the meaning of the derivative in terms of a rate of change and local linear approximation and should be able to use derivatives to solve a variety of problems.

3.       Students should understand the meaning of the definite integral both as a limit of Riemann sums and as the net accumulation of change and should be able to use integrals to solve a variety of problems.

4.       Students should understand the relationship between the derivative and the definite integral as expressed in both parts of the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus.

5.       Students should be able to communicate mathematics both orally and in well-written sentences and should be able to explain solutions to problems.

6.       Students should be able to model a written description of a physical situation with a function, a differential equation, or an integral.

7.       Students should be able to use technology to help solve problems, experiment, interpret results, and verify conclusions.

8.       Students should be able to determine the reasonableness of solutions, including sign, size, relative accuracy, and units of measurement.

9.       Students should develop an appreciation of calculus as a coherent body of knowledge and as a human accomplishment.

 


AP Central  I strongly recommend setting up a student account with the college board.  You will be able to access resources for advanced placement courses, get information about important testing dates, and will have quicker access to you AP scores by being able to view them online.  Click on the image below to go to their site.

Grading Policy

I use a weighted grading system as follows:

50% Individual Tests 

10% Quizzes

15% Team Tests

10% Assignments

15% Final Exam

Follow this link if you need information about weighted grades.

Weighted Grades Explained/Calculator

              

Grades will be determined by the standard scale    :                  

 90-100% = A-   to  A+ range                                                                                                   

 80-89%  = B-   to   B+ range                                                                                                                                                

 70-79%  = C-   to  C+ range                                                                                                      

 60-69%  = D-   to   D  range                                                                                               

  0-59%  = F

 

Specific information on certain grading items:

 

Assignments

Most homework assignments are graded on completeness and effort.  There will be occasions, however, when I grade them for accuracy.  I will not announce ahead of time when this will happen, so you should do every assignment as if it will be graded for accuracy.  They should be neat and done in pencil.  If it is messy, you will need to redo it and have it rechecked later.  It will then be treated as a late assignment (see information about late assignments), I will usually check your homework and in-class assignments daily and award points based on whether they are complete, all work is shown, and a good effort is evident.  If you do not know how to do a problem, do not leave it blank.  You should explain, in detail, why you are unable to do it.  Assignments need to be corrected when we go over them in class.  You must turn in your assignments on the day it is due.

 

Late assignments:  If you do not have your homework at the beginning of class or if it is not finished to my satisfaction, you will have until the next time class meets to finish it for one point less than it is normally worth.  If it is not finished at that time, you will only be able to make it up for half credit.  Exceptions are made for excused absences.  You must make up late assignments before the test on the corresponding chapter.

 

Warm-Up Quizzes or activities will be done at the beginning of almost every class.  As you enter class, you should start on the day’s warm-up exercises right away.  They will usually be graded for accuracy.  These will be counted as quizzes or given class participation points. 

                       

Tests and Quizzes

In addition to warm up quizzes, we will have longer, more comprehensive quizzes at least once a week.  Their point values will vary, but they are often worth 25-30 points each.  There will usually be a test at the end of each unit.  Tests are usually worth 100 points each.

           

Extra Credit I do not give extra credit assignments in A.P. Calculus.  You can earn high-fives, however.

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