Mathematics department receives new textbooks

Students burst through the front doors of the A building as the bell sounds for 7:40 a.m..  Classes begin to start, but students have noticed a change. Something has been replaced. Something is brand new.

The old textbooks were not up to par.  New to this school year are Pearson math textbooks.

To keep up with advancing technology, not only did the math department receive new textbooks, but there is a online version of each textbook that is available to students with iPad and/or computer or internet access.

“The Pearson Envision Series has a software program that goes along with that called Pearson Realize, which allows students to work online interactively and access to the textbook electronically.  That is for all courses that go up to Algebra II,” math department chair Joseph Falger said.  

As for why this change was made, the old textbooks were simply outdated.  For example, the old trigonometry textbook was from 2002.

“They did not really meet up with the digital age and the requirements of the digital age. The other thing is the new books, not only do they have a brand new look, but they just have so many additional features that you cannot even compare it with the original text,” Falger said.

It is only the beginning of the school year, but Falger already sees a change in student achievement.

“Already you can see [improvement] because the textbooks are structured differently. Students are obviously responding differently,” Falger said.

As for the textbook itself, it is a big improvement from the old.

“You can see that the textbooks are giving students more resources than the prior textbooks did,”  Falger said.

Not only are the textbooks an improvement concerning curriculum, but they are an improvement physically as well.

“They are not all torn up and the pages are not ripped out, so it is easier to know what is going on,” junior Jackie Beck said.

There are multiple advantages to getting new textbooks, but one of the main ones is it helps you practice for the SAT that many students take.

“It is going to help with the SAT, which is good.  The new textbook has upped the rigger in the classroom and has made students think more outside the box,” math teacher Carly Meholic said.

Altoona Area is one of the first to try these new textbooks.

“The book is copyrighted of 2018.  These are brand new,”  Falger said.

But above all, because they are indeed brand new textbooks, it will take a while to adjust.

“I think the new textbooks are great but it is going to take a few years to perfect using them,” Meholic said.

Photo courtesy Free Stock

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