Equations with Distributive Property

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Students will be able to apply the distributive property to solve equations.

Big Idea

Make sure you distribute to everybody! This lesson introduces distributive property into the process of solving an equation.


10 minutes

OpenerAs students enter the room, they will immediately pick up and begin working on the opener – Instructional Strategy - Process for openers.  This method of working and going over the opener lends itself to allow students to construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others, which is mathematical practice 3

Learning Target:  After completion of the opener, I will address the day’s learning targets to the students.  For today's lesson, the intended target is “I can solve equations by applying the distributive property.” Students will jot the learning target down in their agendas (our version of a student planner, there is a place to write the learning target for every day). 


45 minutes

Distributive Property Notes: Equations with Distributive Property Explore Narrative In this lesson, attention to precision (mathematical practice 6) plays a HUGE part in student success.  The biggest issue I see students have with this concept is failure to distribute to every term inside the parantheses. I encourage students to draw an arrow from the term they are distributing to each term within the parantheses - some students think it is silly to do that, but they are the same students that usually make the mistakes!  I just tell them, "a silly step can prevent a silly mistake!" In working with the distributive property, it can also help to have students write the problem out so they can see the repeated reasoning (mathematical practice 7/8) that takes place:  3(x + 5) means you actually have x + 5 three times: x + 5 + x + 5 + x + 5.  For the lowest students, I find that writing it out the long way helps them really understand what is going on, and helps to eliminate mistakes.  In the COACHA.B activity, students will be working with a partner, and will be charged with the role of analyzing their partner's work if mistakes exist (mathematical practice 3).  I find that students really enjoy working in the role of teacher, and find it fun to look for the mistakes in each other's work.


5 minutes

Instructional Strategy - Table Discussion To summarize this lesson, I am going to ask that students have a table discussion considering the question – What is one common mistake with distributive property that you need to look out for? How can you check your work?  The purpose of this question is to bring to light common mistakes that students make, which is forgetting to distribute to the second term within the parenthesis.  It is my hope that having this discussion students will remember to be mindful and check their work.