Mathematics Instructional Learning Community
Mathematics Instructional Learning Community
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"Imagination is more important than knowledge." (Albert Einstein)
Algebra 1 classes
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ncrawfor
Posted 9/24/2008 3:05 PM (#2126)
Subject: Algebra 1 classes


Math

Posts: 155
1002525
Location: Lafayette
I think that my algebra 1 class is doing OK as far as learning the material. They seem to have a pretty good background in some of the basic stuff like order of operations and working with positive and negative numbers. They CAN'T do anything without a calculator though. Are you finding this to be true in your algebra 1 classes?
slucas
Posted 9/30/2008 1:35 PM (#2140 - in reply to #2126)
Subject: RE: Algebra 1 classes


Math

Posts: 82
252525
Location: Lafayette
Yes. In my class we have mental math days when we practice doing the math without a calculator and we talk through our steps. I think this helps them figure out what the calculator is doing. Sometimes when they use the calculator and do the problem wrong, they cannot figure out why the calculator will give them the wrong answer, because the calculator is always right. They need to really understand how to work out the problems to use the calculator completely. Have you had any better luck?
acrowley
Posted 9/30/2008 1:39 PM (#2143 - in reply to #2140)
Subject: RE: Algebra 1 classes
Math

Posts: 25
25
Location: Lafayette
My #1 issue with the calculator is teaching the students to put negative numbers in parentheses when they raise them to an even power. The students have a hard time understanding that the calculator is actually correct when saying -3^2 = -9 as it is using PEMDAS. I feel like I talk about this at least once a week in every single class!
kloliver
Posted 9/30/2008 2:21 PM (#2163 - in reply to #2126)
Subject: RE: Algebra 1 classes
Math

Posts: 37
25
Location: Lafayette
I have that problem with the calculators as well. My biggest issue with a few of the students now that we are in chapter 3 is getting them to show their work. Some of the just write the answers no matter how many times I ask them to show their steps.
ncrawfor
Posted 10/1/2008 11:23 AM (#2164 - in reply to #2126)
Subject: RE: Algebra 1 classes


Math

Posts: 155
1002525
Location: Lafayette
I think I will try doing some mental math to help them better understand the process. I am also going to call them up one at a time and have them solve an equation on a white board to see if they have it and to make sure they are showing their work. Some of mine are not showing their work and when they miss it, they can't see where the mistake is.

Does anyone use manipulatives to teach solving equations?
slucas
Posted 10/27/2008 4:04 PM (#2221 - in reply to #2126)
Subject: RE: Algebra 1 classes


Math

Posts: 82
252525
Location: Lafayette
I used dice with my double block class. I had the equations written out with boxes and they filled in the boxes with the numbers they rolled. They never worked so many equations so fast. Then they traded with each other and had to check the work of the other student.
ncrawfor
Posted 10/27/2008 4:08 PM (#2224 - in reply to #2221)
Subject: RE: Algebra 1 classes


Math

Posts: 155
1002525
Location: Lafayette
That sounds like a great activity. I like the fact they are checking the work since all of the equations will be different for each student!

Since we are now using slope and writing equations of lines, do you have any good ideas for helping with understanding?
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