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FAQ

What if my student can’t make up their mind?

Selection forms are due to the GHS Math Department no later than May 24, 2004. If the High School has not received your choice by May 24, your students current math teacher will guide the selection towards the style they feel will best suite your student.

What about standardized tests such as the SAT?

In numerous studies throughout the country, IMP students have performed as well as or better than students in traditional programs on standardized tests, even though IMP students spend far less time on the algebra and geometry skills emphasized by these tests. Go to
www.mathimp.org/general_info/iis/appendixC.html for a list of college that have accepted IMP students.

How do I help my child with homework or Problems of the Week?

Even though the mathematics in many homework assignments or Problems of the Week may be unfamiliar to parents, they can still help their children. General questions like "What do you know about that?" and "Can you find any examples?" will often help students when they are stuck. Many parents’ report that they themselves become very much engaged in their children's assignments and that dinner table conversation often involves the mathematics their children are studying. Go to www.mathimp.org/publications/Parent_brochures.html for more information.

Is IMP rigorous enough for the top students?

Yes. This is a challenging curriculum for mathematically able students. Students are required to think reason, and develop and apply mathematical models for real-world situations.

Some students who have been successful in a skills-based curriculum go through a period of adjustment. At first, these students may grumble because they are not given step-by-step instructions to follow. "Just tell me what to do and I'll do it" has been a successful strategy for many students in the past. Because they are good students and are committed to doing well in school, students who may complain at first do adapt and become just as successful with IMP as they were with a traditional curriculum.

Are top students held back by heterogeneous classes?

No, not when the majority of students in the class are on grade level and come to school ready to work. For Year 1, this generally means having a class most of whose students would otherwise have been enrolled in Algebra I. IMP teachers find that different students do well in different units. It is not necessarily the same students who excel nor the same students who struggle and have difficulties.

Since the curriculum is built around challenging and complex problems, everyone benefits from a diversity of approaches. As students work collaboratively, the thinking skills and problem-solving repertoire of the whole class are enhanced. And for the students who want additional challenges, the IMP curriculum includes a wide range of "extension" problems for each unit.