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Introduction and Implementation Strategies for the Interactive Mathematics Program: A Guide for Teacher-Leaders and Administrators

The Heterogeneous Classroom and the Honors Option

The IMP curriculum is designed to work in heterogeneous classrooms, whose students have had varying levels of success in previous mathematics classes. Successful IMP Year 1 classes have included accelerated students who have completed the first year of algebra in eighth grade, ninth graders who would otherwise have been enrolled in the first year of algebra, and students who might otherwise have been excluded from the college preparatory sequence.

Here are some characteristics of the successful IMP Year 1 environment:

  • The great majority of the students are those who would otherwise have been placed in Algebra I or Geometry.
  • Students work during class primarily in randomly created groups of approximately four.
  • Students have ready access to graphing calculators during class.
  • Students come to school ready to work and are expected to do homework daily.

Many schools have successfully implemented an honors option within the structure of the heterogeneous classroom. In order to earn honors credit, students make a commitment to complete additional work beyond what is normally required. The extension problems described earlier are often used as a component of this additional work.

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