Geometry at San Antonio Academy

Instructor: Mike Hansen, 210.861.3895

Why Take Geometry In 8th Grade?

     The Geometry class is made available to 8th graders for several reasons.  
1) Completing Geometry before high school eliminates the 15 month time gap between Algebra 1 and Algebra 2 that is the norm for a student who follows the math sequence where he completes Geometry in his freshman year of high school. 
2) 8th grade Geometry students will have the opportunity to complete an additional math class during high school.  Geometry is followed by Algebra 2, and then Pre-Calculus.  What follows is the remaining high school sequence according to AlgebraGuy:
If a student struggles a little in Pre-Calculus he will have time to complete Calculus AB before taking the more challenging Calculus BC, or AP Statistics course.

     The Geometry course offered at San Antonio Academy was developed so that the most mathematically talented, and academically serious 8th graders could have a chance to complete a more advanced level of mathematics than most of their contemporaries and to be prepared for upper levels of mathematics that they will encounter in high school.  While accommodations have been made that will help meet the needs of SAA students, both parents and students need to be aware that this is a 10th grade course and that the work required to pass it is at that level. 


     Homework will be assigned daily and posted on the website before Monday of the week in which it will be assigned.  (It is usually available by Friday evening).  On simply follow the Geometry link.  Homework will count 20% of the six-weeks grade. 
     Quizzes will be given regularly.  All quizzes together will count 20% of the six-weeks grade. 
     One project will be given each 6-Weeks.  These projects will afford students the opportunity to apply formal geometric concepts and theorems to the real world.  They will count as 1 quiz grade.
     Tests will be given at least three times each six-weeks, and all tests together will count 60% of the six-weeks grade.

                                      Although the grades in this class do not impact GPA, 
                                         students must maintain a passing grade to remain 
                                            eligible to participate in Academy activities.

Parents and Students - Please Keep The Following In Mind:

     The major success factors for students taking advantage of this unique opportunity at The Academy are:
Attendance (in the classroom by 6:55 am daily), Pro-Active Participation, Effort, Time Management, and Organization. 

     We are sensitive to the fact that these special 8th graders are volunteering to get up an hour earlier than their contemporaries, doubling their mathematical workload, and accepting the extra pressure and responsibility that is usually associated with much older students.  However, the positive effects of successfully completing this course will far outweigh the sacrifices these boys are making. 

     Support will need to come from everyone involved to encourage these boys to use their organizers to keep track of the activities in all of their classes, to help them accept the limitations that will be placed on their personal time, and to help maintain the focus on the benefits of completing a course that requires this level of effort.

     Note:  Successfully completing this course does not guarantee high school credit.  All high schools require students to take an entrance exam for placement.  A student's level of success on that test determines his math class placement.

   Course Outline:

      August, September, and October:
         Basic definitions and concepts (points, lines, planes, 
         angles, basic relationships, and postulates)
         Deductive and Inductive Reasoning (if-then statements, 
         converse,  logic, patterns)
         Constructing Proofs

      November and December:
         Geometric Comparisons (similarity, congruence)
         Geometric Classifications (polygons, quadrilaterals)
         Geometry Application Projects

      January, February, and March
         Nuances of Triangles (Pythagorean Theorem)
         Circles (tangents, arcs, chords, angles, segments)
         Perimeter, Area Volume, Surface Area

      April & May
         Trigonometry and Algebraic Connections
         Euclidian Transformations

   Academic Goals:
   The goals and objectives for Geometry at San Antonio 
   Academy this school year are:
   1. To learn the vocabulary and language of geometry
   2. To have working definitions of geometric concepts and 
   3. To understand the reasoning behind formal geometry and be 
       able to create individualized proofs for geometric theories.
   4. To apply the concepts of geometry across the curriculum.

About the Instructor:

     Mike Hansen has been teaching Pre-AP Algebra and Geometry at San Antonio Academy since 2005.  Prior to which he completed 21 years of teaching in public schools in San Antonio.  He taught at Wood Middle School and Eisenhower Middle School in the North East District for a total of 12 years.  For 9 years Mr. Hansen taught the advanced algebra course at Alamo Heights Junior School.  During his tenure in the public school domain he has taught 6th, 7th, and 8th grade math and Pre-Algebra.  However, for the most part, Mr. Hansen has taught both High-school-level Algebra I, and an advanced version of Algebra I (Pre-AP) for the most talented students.  In addition to the 7th grade Algebra Pre-AP course, he will be teaching the 8th grade Pre-AP Algebra I course, the Geometry course, and the MATHCOUNTS elective at The Academy this fall.

     Mike Hansen has always been a proponent of advanced math courses for students who are capable of completing that level of work and who are well prepared to meet the challenges that are inherent in these courses.  You can find out much more about him by perusing this web site.


     Because of the nature of this course, and because of his commitment to ensuring that students have tutoring time available, Mr. Hansen will be on campus by 6:30am each school day.  He will be available in the algebra classroom for extra help as needed.  After school tutoring is also available at 3:30pm every day except Fridays.  Tutoring will be available on Friday mornings before Chapel.  In addition, he is available on his cell phone most of the time before 9pm for questions/concerns for both students and parents.