Precalculus Syllabus

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Boston Latin School

Department Of Mathematics

Course Precalculus
Teacher Mike Huben
Web Site:
School phone: 617-635-8895 (leave written messages in my mailbox)
Classroom 306


This course builds upon the skills and concepts gained over previous courses in Algebra and Geometry. Since our curriculum is spiral in design, the scope and pace for presenting various content strands will focus more on extending comprehension in the context of function analysis rather than treating them as new material. With less time spent on review, this allows more time for higher order reasoning skills needed for future studies. This course fulfills the BLS graduation requirement and adequately prepares students for a senior elective. At the conclusion of this course, students will be able to: write equivalent forms of equations, inequalities, and systems of equations and solve them with fluency- mentally or with paper/pencil in simple cases and using technology in all cases; use a variety of symbolic representations, including recursive and parametric equations, for functions and relations; judge the meaning, utility, and reasonableness of the results of symbolic manipulations, including those carried out by technology; understand relations and functions and select, convert flexibly among, and use various representations for them; analyze functions of one variable by investigating rates of change, intercepts, zeros, asymptotes, and local and global behavior; understand and perform transformations such as arithmetically combining, composing, and inverting commonly used functions, using technology to perform such operations on more complicated symbolic expressions; understand and compare the properties of classes of functions, including exponential, polynomial, rational, logarithmic, and trigonometric functions; use various representations to help understand the effects of simple transformations and their compositions; interpret representations of functions of two variables; identify essential quantitative relationships in a situation and determine the class ore classes of functions that might model the relationships; approximate and interpret rates of change from graphical and numerical data.


Precalculus with Limits: A Graphing Approach, Ron Larson, Sixth Edition, ISBN-13: 978-1111427641.



Projects up tp 20%
Notebook 10%
Tests the remainder (4 to 6 tests per term)
Homework (Modified as described below in Homework.)
Final Exam Counts as two 5th term tests.
Final Grade is the average of the 5 terms.


Homework assignments are given to help students learn the material in the class and to develop good reasoning and problem solving skills. The expectation is that students will do each night’s assigned homework. Homework will be assigned every day except the day before tests (and perhaps the day of a test.) WORK MUST ALWAYS BE SHOWN, or the homework is not done. Homework should take 30-45 minutes, but some times will be longer.

The Math Department Homework Policy:

  • If a student completes all homework assignments then 2 percentage points will be added to his or her term average.
  • If a student completes all but two or fewer homework assignments then the term average is unaffected.
  • If a student misses more than two homework assignments in a term then he or she will lose 1 percentage point from the term average for each assignment missed.


The classroom should be a place where each student feels comfortable with the other students and expressing thoughts and opinions. Students must act and speak respectfully with each other, and take responsibility for their words and actions. The guiding rule is that THE MATH COMES FIRST.

Please make sure your student is well rested. Sleepy students can not learn well, and also feel miserable when they are groggy in class. Proper scheduling of work and play so that they don’t interfere with sleep are important goals!

Students are also expected to abide by all the rules of the BLS student handbook. Especially tardiness, attendance, appropriate language, food, drink, gum, electronics, etc. Failure to comply with these rules will result in quick discipline.

Office Hours

I will respond daily to email at or my home phone at (781) 643-1534. You can also leave a message for me at the BLS main office: (617) 635-8895. If you’d like a meeting, write or call to set up an appointment.

Students should come to me for help as soon as they need it. I’m almost always available immediately before and after school, and will be delighted to help them directly or set them up with tutoring, on-line resources, etc.

Course Precalculus
Teacher Mike Huben
Web Site:
School phone: 617-635-8895 (leave written messages in my mailbox)

Students and Parents:

Please read the above information for this course together. If one of you cannot easily read English, this page is online and has automatic translation. Go to, click Google Translate and then select the language you want.

Please sign this form to show that you understand the purpose, format, and expectations of this course. Please return this signature sheet to me and keep the other for your own reference. Please feel free to see, call, or e-mail me with any questions or problems you might have.


Do you have any special seating requests? (For vision, hearing, or other medical reasons only.) Is there anybody you should not be seated next to? (Due to dislike, distraction, or other reasons.)

I have read and I understand the course description and classroom expectations for Precalculus.

Student name (printed) ________________________________________________

Student signature ________________________________________________ Date __________________


Your student is required to have a TI-83 or TI-84 series calculator. They will need them soon.

I have reviewed the course description and classroom expectations for (course) with my son or daughter.

Parent signature ________________________________________________ Date __________________

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