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Sequoia Mathematics Department

Sequoia_Mathematics_Department iconSequoia Mathematics Departmenttitle

Math Department 2015-16

SHS Math Department 2014-2015

Sequoia High School Math Department 2013/14

2009-2010 Sequoia Math Department

Mathematics Department

Mathematics_Department iconMathematics Departmenttitle

The Sequoia Math Department teaches a comprehensive series of courses aligned to state standards designed to increase students' understanding and competency in increasingly complex mathematics. Our goals are to improve the success rate of all of our students and support all students in completing a high level of mathematics. We encourage students to go beyond the minimum two year requirement and strive to get the majority of the students to complete required a-g courses. Our highest level of coursework include IB Standard Level and Higher Level mathematics with further courses in Multivariable Calculus, Differential Equations, and Linear Algebra. We also offer additional Support classes for students below grade level in grades 9 and 10 and have an Algebra Readiness course for those students far below grade level upon entering high school.

The teachers in the Mathematics Department work collaboratively in curricular teams to provide consistency and support. All teams meet on a regular basis to discuss pacing, strategies, data, best practices and assessments.

The department adopted the College Preparatory Math (CPM) curricula for Algebra I (9th grade), Geometry, Algebra II/Trig, and Pre-Calculus. This program comes from the University of California at Davis and is a nationally recognized program named as one of five exemplary math programs nationwide by the US Department of Education. CPM is a time-tested program and has been adopted by thousands of schools throughout the U.S and internationally. It includes the same curriculum as the traditional math textbooks, but it is presented in a unique fashion. Each unit includes an overriding problem anchored in the real world. Teachers coach, leading students to discovery, pose questions, lecture, monitor learning, clarify, and summarize concepts. The integrated curriculum spirals concepts throughout the course. Mastery is not expected the first time that a student is exposed to a concept; rather, mastery is expected over time as the students come in contact with concepts over and over again. The approach focuses on core concepts throughout the year and incorporates the 8 Mathematical Practices of the Common Core curriculum.

Algebra I (10-12th grade) and Algebra II curricula is coordinated throughout the district and utilizes the Big Ideas textbook as well as a variety of supplemental materials. IB courses utilize approved instructional materials in addition to other texts.

There are eighteen fully-credentialed math teachers in our department. We all make ourselves available to tutor individually by posting office hours. Most teachers are available during brunch and lunch and frequently before or after school. In addition, we offer a math support program before and after school in the library via the SAFE program where students can get help on all levels of math. Every Tuesday we offer evening tutorials; one section for our Pre-Calculus and Calculus students and another section for our other courses. Students may drop in during the three hours to get assistance on concepts and assignments from a department math teacher.

New IB Math Pathways for 19-20 and Beyond

New_IB_Math_Pathways_for_19-20_and_Beyond iconNew IB Math Pathways for 19-20 and Beyondtitle

Every 7 years, IB courses go through a thorough evaluation and curriculum review. IB professionals, teachers and universities are involved in this process. This review can result in small curriculum changes while other times changes are more significant. The IB math program has undergone this review and is changing significantly. Next year we will begin teaching the newly created IB math courses for rising 9th - 11th graders. Rising seniors will complete their current IB math courses and test with the old curriculum in May 2020. 
IB has created two math pathway options. After a student completes Alg II/Trig, they will chose between IB Math Analysis & Approaches or IB Math Applications & Interpretation. Both pathways will be implemented at the SL and HL levels.

Please see the attached documents below for Sequoia’s updated math pathways chart, a deeper explanation of the new IB math courses, and FAQs.

Sequoia’s math department and IB Office are very excited about this new curriculum. IB math teachers will be attending official IB training this Spring/ Summer. We feel the two pathways give students the opportunity to focus on a mathematical approach that meets their career goals and math interests.

We deeply believe in IB’s instructional approach. IB cares about critical thinking, deep analysis and preparing students with the skills they will need to be successful in college and beyond. We look forward to rolling out these new courses and answering any questions you may have.
New IB Math Courses Information Documents

New_IB_Math_Courses_Information_Documents iconNew IB Math Courses Information Documentstitle

Sequoia Math Teachers

Sequoia_Math_Teachers iconSequoia Math Teacherstitle

Click the name to send an email message:
Brand, David
Algebra Readiness/Algebra Topics, Algebra I
Ext. 69623

Bray, Eileen
Algebra I, Geometry, Yearbook
Ext. 69635
Geometry, Algebra II/Trig

Gross, Peter
Ext. 69700

Howard, Kayla
Algebra I
Ext. 69630

Ko, Kevin
Geometry, Algebra II
Ext. 69674

Ku, Nancy
Algebra I, Geometry
Ext. 69641

Larkin, Laura
Algebra Readiness, IB Math Studies, Pre-Calculus
Ext. 69678

Luttrell, Laura
Algebra Support, Algebra II/Trig
Ext. 69646
Moaveni, Robert
Algebra 1, Pre-Calculus

Mora, Fidel
Algebra 1 LEP, Geometry
Ext. 69644
Algebra Readiness LEP, Geometry

Peters, Elizabeth
Algebra Readiness LEP, Accelerated Geometry/Algebra II/Trig, AP/IB Calculus, Math Dept. Chair
Ext. 69637

Ramanathan, Subathra
Algebra Readiness/Support, Geometry
Ext. 69686
Relator, Tony
Algebra 1/Support, Algebra II

Schmidt, Melissa
AP Statistics
Ext. 69689

Skillin, Adili
Algebra 1/Support
Ext. 69601
Algebra 1, Algebra II/Trig
Algebra 1/Support

Sterne, Catherine
Algebra I, Geometry LEP, Algebra II/Trig
Ext. 69666
Yezerski, Joshua
Algebra Readiness/Support, AP/IB Calculus AB, IB HL Year 2
Ext. 69660
Current Mathematics Courses

Current_Mathematics_Courses iconCurrent Mathematics Coursestitle

Our curriculum currently includes:

  • Algebra Readiness/Algebra Topics (elective credit)
  • Algebra I Support - 9th and 10th grade (elective credit)
  • Algebra I
  • Geometry
  • Accelerated Geometry/Algebra II Trigonometry
  • Algebra II, Algebra II/trigonometry
  • Pre-Calculus
  • AP Statistics
  • IB Math Studies
  • IB Math SL (AP AB Calculus)
  • IB Math HL Year 2 (BC Calculus + IB college level math & calculus topics)
  • Multivariable Calculus
  • Ordinary Differential Equations
  • Linear Algebra

If you have any questions about our curriculum or department, please contact the department chair, Beth Peng, at


Algebra Readiness/Algebra Topics/Algebra I

This is a two-year remedial course for incoming 9th grade students who are not ready to take Algebra I. Algebra Readiness includes the study of pre-algebraic skills and concepts described in the Mathematics Framework for California Public Schools. The nine topics are whole numbers, operations on whole numbers, rational number, operations on rational numbers, symbolic notation, equations and functions, the coordinate plane, graphing proportional relationships, and algebra. The course meets 2 periods - once every block day and twice on Mondays. The two courses function as a single class, meeting a total of 100 minutes daily. Elective credit in freshmen year earned for this course will not count toward the Math graduation requirement. However, completion of the course at the end of 10th grade constitutes completion of an entire Algebra I course. Students receive math credit during sophomore year.

Algebra Support

This is a course to support freshmen and sophomore students who are concurrently enrolled in Algebra I. The course focuses on the prerequisites and skills needed for Algebra I and preparation for CAHSEE. Alternative methodologies such as hands on manipulatives are used in this class. Elective credit earned for this course will not count toward the Math graduation requirement.

Algebra I

This course covers order of operations, rational numbers, equation solving, inequalities, polynomials, factoring, rational expressions, functions, graphing of linear equations, systems of linear equations, radical expressions, and quadratics.


A rigorous college-prep course required by all 4-year colleges. Geometrical concepts are discovered by and taught to students through guided lessons. Topics covered include inductive and deductive reasoning, angles, polygons, congruent triangles, constructions, circles, right triangles, similarity, solids, logic, and introductory trigonometry.

Prerequisite: Completion of Algebra I or department recommendation. Open to 9th-graders who have earned a B or better in a formal full-year algebra course in the 8th grade.


Accelerated Geometry/Algebra II Trigonometry

This course is designed to accelerate advanced students to enable them to take calculus and higher level math (after calculus) in their junior and/or senior years. The material is covered at an honors level, and is accelerated so that two courses are taught in one year. The course is excellent preparation for the analysis and synthesis required in advanced math courses. The course covers geometry from a deductive perspective. Topics include proofs, lines, triangles, polygons, vectors, circles, and 3D geometry. The algebra 2 portion of the course covers functions, graphing, polynomials, transcendental functions, rational expressions and equations, radical expressions and equations, trigonometry, complex numbers, and sequences and series. In addition, some topics in probability and statistics will be included as time allows. Students successfully completing this accelerated course may directly enroll in precalculus the following year.

Prerequisites: Algebra 1 with an B or better, teacher recommendation highly encouraged, and a strong desire to learn mathematics.

Algebra II

A math elective, Algebra 2 is a college-prep class. Algebra 1 concepts are reviewed and are taken to a more sophisticated level. The new topics include the applications of linear, quadratic, exponential, and logarithmic equations, systems of equations, determinants, Cramer's Rule, exponential and logarithmic functions, and introductions to conic sections, probability, and statistics.

Prerequisite: Completion of Algebra 1 and Geometry with C- or better

Algebra II/Trigonometry

A math elective, Algebra II/Trigonometry is a college-prep class. Algebra I concepts are reviewed and taken to a more sophisticated level. New topics include the applications of linear, quadratic, exponential and logarithmic equations, determinants, systems of equations, exponential and logarithmic functions, conic sections, sequences, statistics, and probability. The course also includes trigonometry including sine, cosine, and tangent functions and the Laws of Sine and Cosine. Special emphasis is placed on mathematical modeling, graphical representations, and investigations.

Prerequisite: Completion of Algebra I and Geometry with a C or better.

IB Math Studies

This rigorous, one-year math offering is designed to provide a realistic mathematics course for students with varied backgrounds and abilities Students most likely to select this course are those whose main interests lie outside the field of mathematics. The course develops the skills needed to cope with the mathematical demands of a technological society with an emphasis on the application of math to real-life situations. Some of the topics covered include logic, statistics, introductory calculus, as well as a review of geometry and topics from Algebra II. Students enrolled in this course will take the IB Math Studies exam.

Prerequisite: Completion of Algebra II/Trigonometry or Pre-Calculus (with C or below)


A challenging elective course, whose purpose is to prepare students to take AP Calculus and/or IB Math SL/HL the following year. The first semester covers a wide range of topics, including trigonometry, inverse functions, including circular trig, triangle trig, vector, logarithms, and real world modeling with sinusoidal functions. The emphasis is on integrating graphing into the study of all concepts. The second semester is function theory, rational functions, matrices, probability and statistics, Algebra for college Mathematics, polar functions, and series.

Prerequisite: Completion of Algebra II/Trigonometry

AP Statistics

This course introduces students to the major concepts and tools for collecting, analyzing, and drawing conclusions from data. Students are exposed to four broad conceptual themes: 1) exploring data: describing patterns and departures from patterns, 2) sampling and experimentation: planning and conducting a study, 3) anticipating patterns: exploring random phenomena using probability and simulation, 4) statistical inference: estimating population parameters and testing hypotheses.

Prerequisite: Succesful completion of Algebra II/trig, Pre-Calculus, or IB SL

IB Math Standard Level (SL), AP Calculus, IB Math Higher Level (HL) Year 1

This course covers the Calculus curriculum as set forth by the College Board Advanced Placement program and the International Baccaluareate Programme. The course includes topics such as limits, definition of the derivative, applications of the derivative, the Mean Value Theorum, and integral calculus concepts. In addition, the course reviews vectors, matrices, trigonometry, and other IB topics. Students who successfully complete this course will be prepared to take the APAB Calculus exam and IB Standard Level Math exam. This course is also the first year of the two year higher level IB/AP math

Prerequisite: Successful completion of Pre-Calculus with a C- or better. (B highly recommended)

IB Higher Level (HL) Year 2B Higher Level Year 2, AP Calculus (BC)

This course follows the IB Higher Level Year 1/AP Calculus (AB) course, and is designed for gifted math students. The course covers all of the material from BC calculus that was not covered in AP Calculus (AB), and uses the textbook from UC Berkeley's core calculus for math majors sequence. Additionally, a wide range of other advanced topics are covered including calculus based probability theory, complex analysis, functional analysis, separable and first order nonhomogeneous differential equations, advanced induction proofs, multivariable vector geometry and introductory vector calculus. This course not only provides excellent preparation for the BC calculus AP exam, but it also gives students a big advantage in their college mathematics courses. Students who successfully complete the course will be prepared to take the AP/BC exam and the IB Higher Level exam. Students will also receive transferable college credit from Canada college.

Prerequisite: Completion of IB Math HL Year 1/Advanced Placement Calculus (AB or BC) with a C or better (B is highly recommended)

Multivariable Calculus

This course follows IB Higher Level Year 2/AP Calculus (BC), and covers the traditional university level multivariable calculus curriculum. The course covers parametric equations and polar, spherical, and cylindrical coordinates (calculus based), vectors and the geometry of space, vector functions, the calculus of functions of several variables, multiple integrals, vector calculus, including Green's Theorem and Stoke's Theorem, and second order differential equations and their applications. Additionally, the material from IB Higher Level Year 2 is reviewed to make sure that students are prepared for the IB exam. Students will receive transferable collge credit for this class from Canada college.

Prerequisite: Successful completion of IB HL Y2

Ordinary Differential Equations

This is a standard, top university level introductory course in ordinary differential equations. The textbook we have adopted is the book used for the same course at Stanford University. Topics include, but are not limited to: separable ordinary differential equations (ODEs), first order homogeneous and nonhomogenous linear ODEs, second order homogeneous and nonhomogeneous linear ODE's, higher order linear ODE's, systems of linear ODE's, series solutions, a wide variety of applications to ODE's, numerical methods, computing and ODE's, and nonlinear ODE's. This course also provides a review of the HL Year 2 material for students who need to take the IB Higher Level exam, and students will be asked to take a leadership role in teaching/tutoring HL Year 2 students. Other upper division university level topics will be taught as time allows, based on student interest. Students completing this course will also receive transferable college credit from Canada College.

Linear Algebra

This is a standard, top university level introductory course in linear algebra. The textbook we have adopted is also used by Stanford University and several UC campuses. Course curriculum includes, but is not limited to: matrix computations/matrix algebra, methods of solving systems of linear equations in linear algebra, determinants, vector spaces, eigenvalues and eigenvectors, orthogonality and least squares, symmetric matrices and quadratic forms, a wide variety of applications to linear algebra, and computing in linear algebra. This course also provides a review of the HL Year 2 material for students who need to take the IB Higher Level exam, and students will be asked to take a leadership role in teaching/tutoring HL Year 2 students. Other upper division university level topics will be taught as time allows, and based on student interest. Students completing this course will also receive transferable college credit from Canada College.