Algebra I – Libertas Academy

Libertas Algebra 

(8th grade – High School)


Students ready to begin instruction in Algebra can expect a fun and interesting year with this course.  Using the Life of Fred Beginning Algebra text, this class will provide instruction in all required skills for high school level Algebra.


The strategic use of the Life of Fred series allows for greater individual learning opportunities.  With class meeting once per week, students working independently between sessions might find standard math curricula more challenging to understand.  The chosen text provides ample context, real life application, and explanation.  As a result, homework will be heavier on reading and lighter on practice questions than a typical math class.


Teacher availability and student responsibility are essential components to the course.  The instructor will be available by phone and email for questions during the week.  This is vital in making the class successful!  No student should be willing to “give up” on math for the week and wait for the next class to gain understanding.  It is an expectation and a requirement for students to admit need and seek help at any point they feel stuck.


Mastery of the subject matter and continued ability to show proficiency combine together as the goal of this course.  Grades will be given every 9 weeks based on the following formulas:


9 weeks grade (first and third 9 weeks): 10% class participation/attendance, 25% homework completion, 15% in-class written work, 15% quizzes, 15% chapter tests, and 20% mid-semester exam


Semester grade (second and fourth 9 weeks): 10% class participation/attendance, 25% homework completion, 15% in-class written work, 10% quizzes, 10% chapter tests, 10% mid-semester exam, and 20% semester exam.


Required Texts: Life of Fred Beginning Algebra and Life of Fred: Zillions of Practice Problems for Beginning Algebra

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Lisa Smith Teacher Profile
Lisa Smith graduated from New York University’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts awarded with a BFA in Dramatic Writing in 2003.  Her pursuits in writing have led her down various paths including work in the publishing industry, as a blogger, and as a freelance editor.  Lisa enjoys writing and has a passion for the writing of others.  She is a voracious reader and truly enjoys the process of taking a first draft to a final one as both a writer and an editor.
Lisa’s varied interests include mathematics.  During (and since) college, she tutored for Kaplan Test Prep for all sections of the SAT, ACT, GRE, and GMAT.  Additionally, she has served as a private tutor and course instructor for advanced mathematics courses like Pre-Calculus and Algebra 2.  Math mastery came easy for her, but the enjoyment of math didn’t come until she began teaching it to others.  She loves helping students who loath math learn to appreciate and excel at it.
After years of serving only as a private tutor, Lisa is excited to share her passion for learning (be it English, Writing, Math, or Science) in a classroom setting.  Students should anticipate an instructor who cares most about comprehension and the ability to demonstrate mastery than one who wants answers by rote.  Her genuine enthusiasm about learning and her personal ability to connect with her students have proven an effective formula for enabling that exact outcome in the past and serve as her continual goal.

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