Education: MATH 0950

Instructor: Christian Mills, MS Montana State University
Office: Room 106, Saratoga High School
Phone: (307)
Office Hours: M-Th 7:30 - 4:30, Fr 7:30 - 2:30
Personal Website:

This is a two-semester course study of Algebra. The course will cover 1) basic topics such as number operations and measurement, 2) general topics such as properties of algebra, graphing, data analysis, and geometry, and 3) problem-solving/critical-thinking topics such as solving equations, applied statistics, lines and equations of lines, and probability. This class meets all of the Wyoming Mathematics Standards and Benchmarks for 9th grade. Attending and successfully completing Algebra I allows a student to attend more advanced mathematics and science classes during his or her high school career.

This course is designed to help students fulfill common core requirements as well as to prepare for and be successful on state standardized tests and the national standardized ACT test. The course will also prepare students for Algebra II and Geometry, if the student successfully completes this Algebra I course.

The classroom rule is "Respect." If you wish to be respected by your teacher and peers you must learn to respect your teacher, peers, classroom, and other's personal belongings. Failure to uphold the standard will result in verbal warnings, written warnings, lunch detentions with Mr. Mills, or referrals to the office and a visit to the assistant principal. You will be expected to act as young adults, to be responsible for your own actions, to give an honest effort, and to be self-motivated.

Each day you attend class you will be expected to bring a hand calculator and paper on which you will record notes and important facts, complete homework assignments, answer questions to daily class starters, and complete practice exams. Access to an online textbook will be given to each student during the first week of class, and will be accessed regularly during the school year. If a student wants to take a hard-cover textbook home, one may be checked out. Parents are encouraged to follow student progress by referencing this page, your notebook, and the online textbook.

HOMEWORK (1 point each):
As a teacher, I feel that it is important for students to practice problems similar to those they will encounter on Quizzes, Unit Tests, State Standardized Tests, and on the Semester Exams. Homework will be given daily, however, homework is the student's opportunity to demonstrate responsibility and self-motivation to learn and to seek understanding. Homework will be concise and to the point. Students will be given in-class time to examine solutions to homework problems, and are encouraged to ask questions to achieve understanding.

QUIZZES (4 points each):
Quizzes will consist of 4 questions and there will be one (1) quiz for each section we cover during the school year.  The purpose of the quizzes is for the students to demonstrate proficiency in each topic we cover.  The questions on the quizzes will have varying degrees of difficulty, usually starting with a simple computation question, complex computation question, critical thinking question, and an applied word problem. These problems are typically taken from the collection of homework problems assigned.

UNIT EXAMS (20 points each):
There will be a unit exam for each unit covered during the school year.  Unit exams will consist of 20 questions, of varying difficulty, taken from the pool of quiz questions completed during the unit.

FINAL EXAM (100 points each):
Besides the PAWS test that will be given out in January and in March, as well as the standards and benchmarks exams given out at the completion of each unit, there will be no comprehensive final exam at the end of each semester or at the end of the school year.

Grading will be done in the following manner:

The students will be given a percentage grade based on points earned divided by points total (points per assignment are given above), and the students may also receive a performance and proficiency grade on assignments which meet Wyoming State Science/Math Standards.

Plagiarism is defined as "presenting as one's own work the work of another person -- words, ideas, data, evidence, thoughts, information, organizing principles, or style of presentation -- without proper attribution."  While we will talk about the dangers of plagiarism in class, it is your responsibility to be aware of what is and what is not plagiarism, whether intentional or not. Your instructor has a variety of tools at his disposal for testing written work for plagiarism, ample experience at detecting it, and a low tolerance for it. If you have questions about whether you are adequately citing or attributing work, please ask your mentor or instructor. Also, cheating in any form will not be tolerated. Students caught cheating will receive a zero for that assignment, assessment, or exam and will lose the privledge of making up the grade in question. These students will also be sent to the assistant principal to be disciplined accordingly. These offenses (plagiarism and cheating) care considered serious offenses in my classroom.