Now that we have wrapped up the mortgages activity, it is time to put the students through some additional practice dealing with series applications. Attached you will find a worksheet that I use for this. I ask the students to work INDEPENDENTLY on this worksheet until they are stuck. Once they are stuck, I have established a protocol for receiving support. This format really challenges students to make sense of problems and persevere in solving them (MP1). See below:
To close class I direct the student’s attention to #8 and the final two challenge problems. Many times, kids are intimidated by the final problems of the worksheet, especially if they seem abstract and “disconnected” from the more structured problems. I like to have the students quickly fill in the final box of the triangular numbers diagram so that they feel like they have at least gotten the problem rolling. I then clarify what the questions are asking them to do, and give a little history on Plutarch, who is mentioned in Challenge Problem #2. Hopefully, this “de-intimidates” the kids and they are able to view the challenge problem as something that really can be conquered!