Hello wonderful educators. I am hoping to get some help on a tough situation I am in. So first, a little bit of background facts:
- This is my first time teaching an AP class. I've adjuncted for Calc I at a local community college, but this is my first year teaching AP BC Calculus.
- The students at my school have a tremendous advantage in BC calculus. Taking AB calculus was a pre-req. That means all of my students have been through AB.
- However, last year, the AB teacher was not good at all and most of the students got 1s on the exam, and a few got 2s. I think one of them got a 3.
- So when I was told I'd teach BC, I thought I'd be able to cruise through the AB material and get to the BC stuff. However, their lack of preparation in AB really hindered our progress.
- You might think "well, most schools just have AB or BC, not both, so you should be in the same position as other BC teachers: teaching all AB and BC topics in one academic year." But my rebuttal is that the school I teach at has a very limited number of classtime minutes. Basically, If I used the AP Calculus BC Course/Exam Description's estimation of how long to spend on each unit, I'd complete the course on our last day of school, which is late May. Obviously that's an issue because the AP Exam is on May 9th and I wanted to have time to review.
- I just now started the unit on Polar and Parametric equations, and then I still need to get through the infinite sequences and series unit.
- Another barrier is that we teach on an A/B schedule, which means I only see the students every other day. So even though there's about 55 days before the AP exam, I only have about 24 class periods left (discounting weekends, Spring Break, and the days I don't see the students).
So, my ultimate question is this:
What should I do?
- Should I just press on and cover polar + parametric + infinite series and not have time to review? Should I expect students to meet with me outside of class time to make sure we have time to cover the material (this would be difficult given the students' other responsibilities at the school)?
- Should I finish Polar + Parametric, cut my losses with infinite series and not even try to teach that, so that we can review everything from throughout the year in hopes of getting the students at least a decent AB sub score?
- Should I go more extreme and not even do polar/parametric equations and just have 24 days of reviewing everything up to this point, to try to ensure good AB sub scores?
I know it's a tough and very specific question, probably more of a subjective answer, but any guidance would be helpful. Note: I am also asking my department chair and the current AB teacher for their opinions as well, but I thought it wouldn't hurt to get even more perspective from people on here.