Curriculum Review:

HWA Geometry

Basic Information

- Copyright date: 1997

- Published by Holt, Rinehart and Winston

- Includes teaching resources, a block scheduling handbook, lab activities, lab activities and long-term projects, practice workbook.

- High school (grades 10-12), general education geometry including angles, parallels and polygons, congruent triangles, perimeter and area, shapes in space, surface area, volume, etc.

- Recommended for a class, but could be delivered in small groups or individually.

- Book connects geometry to the real world by giving real life examples of theories. Teaching big ideas and concepts. They begin each lesson with, “Why should I learn this?” Learning takes place when students construct knowledge for themselves.

-The authors have contributed to various studies and have used that research to build this curriculum. The curriculum is also peer-reviewed. This curriculum was written in 1997 so there isn’t a lot of direct evidence linked to research based development.

Item Review

  • Prerequisite Skills - 1: The book seems to focus on one skill, then when it’s mastered, you move on and don’t cover that skill again. Could use additional prior knowledge review.

  • Multiple Levels of Difficulty - 1: This book is a "one size fits all" approach and is dependant on the teacher and special ed teacher to make modifications.

  • Skills Reappear Throughout the Curriculum to Ensure Sufficient Practice - 1: The only piece that addressed other chapters was "assessing prior knowledge" that was small (3 questions).

  • An Adequate Number of Tasks Presented for Each Skill - 2: Too wordy. There is not enough visual representation and not enough practice with the problems. Very few chances for students to get adequate practice and repetition to learn the skills.

  • Strategies for Maintenance and Generalization - 2: The curriculum does a good job of trying to tie the geometry into the real world. Example are given of practical applications.

  • Clearly Defined Objectives Aligned With Standards - 3: Chapters identify the objectives clearly, and for each unit as well. There are also specific measurable objectives within the chapters. Because there are only two or three objectives, it is clear what is being worked on with the students at that particular time. The objectives are aligned with state standards.

  • Higher Order Thinking Skills - 3: Encourages practical problem solving, not just equations.

Sample Textbook Pages:

Recommended Enhancements

  • Differentiated instruction in the textbook for different learning styles

  • Differentiated activities in the margins of the teacher’s edition, based off different levels of difficulty

  • Additinal review of prior knowledge needed for the lesson

  • Info could be broken down into days of the week with corresponding problem sets to scaffold properly

  • Could also add sets at the end of each chapter that cover previous chapters and other foundational knowledge (such as algebra) that the students need to review and be proficient in in order to understand new concepts

  • Additional activities besides just questions and answers would also be used in the hopes of creating a more hands on learning approach for kinesthetic learners


The curriculum provides great jumping off and starting points for teachers, but would need enhancements. The curriculum comes with resource materials, but it would need to be supplemented because it is lacking in areas such as proper review, hands on activities, technology, and differentiated instruction.