Reflection: Perseverance Make it More - Section 2: Put it into Action


This reflection is about perseverance; both mine and my students!  I thought this set of story problems were fairly straightforward and selected them because they covered a range of earlier concepts from working with formulas to writing a quadratic equation.  What I found as my students worked on these at their seats and then presented them to the class on the front board was that some the problems were more complicated than I'd assumed. 

The three different problems solved on my board show the range of thinking and ability in my class.  The students doing Problem #3 set up the equation nicely and persevered to get the final cubic equation.  What was really interesting was when a classmate asked how they got from the cubic equation to h=1 and they replied "We graphed it in our calculator and got the zero."  This made me grin because it's just the kind of strategic use of tools I hope to develop in my students.

The students doing Problem #9 drew a nice diagram to help them set up the equation, but forgot to use common units for time until another student watching them caught their mistake and told them.  They persevered to rework the equation using 53/60 and found an answer that made sense. 

The students doing Problem #4 really struggled at first with what to do with all the variables until a classmate suggested they cancel out all the parts that were the same for both balloons.  There was some interesting discussion about whether that was okay mathematically, until the student making the suggestion reminded them that they cancel things out all the time in fractions which is what the factor really comes from. 

Overall, this lesson gave my students an opportunity to work collaboratively and to stick to the problems even when the going got tough.

  Perseverance: Student Work
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Make it More

Unit 5: Creating Algebraically
Lesson 2 of 10

Objective: SWBAT apply complicated equations in one variable.

Big Idea: More storytelling, only this time your students get to read the stories and figure out the answers.

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Math, algebraic expression, Algebra, Linear and Nonlinear Equations, Algebra II, master teacher project, algebraic methods, 11th Grade
  55 minutes
equations and inequalities
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