The Digital Exponent Worksheet

Print Lesson

Objective

SWBAT to review basic exponent questions from the unit

Big Idea

Students need a chance to practice a wide variety of questions.

Start Up

5 minutes

This assessment is meant to develop student thinking around digital resources. I give them a series of  practice questions online and then give them some follow up questions at the end of the session. Students are given full support for all the online questions. This includes video help as well as the answer. I also circulate and intervene to give as much support as possible. We ask students to take notes as they work and ask questions when they need help. The idea is that they can use this time to be ready for whatever questions we use for an exit ticket. 

In this start up, we discuss different ways that students can effectively use a digital video resource. I give some ideas and they share ideas, but we talk about why certainly things help and why others may not help. 

For example, many students request music when they work individually. However, this lesson encourages students to reference videos when they need help. Is it efficient to spend time finding music you like and then pausing it when you need to watch a math video? Probably not, but I always let the students decide. I believe need to make this choice for themselves. If I see them getting distracted by music, I have a conversation with them and suggest alternatives.

Some of the more pragmatic suggestions including using video in ways that we can't use real time conversation. Students love having the ability to pause, rewind and replay segments of video. I always find it interesting that students often need to hear that this is allowed. Many of them say, "wait, I am allowed to rewind? Its okay if I need to watch certain parts over and over again?" I share stories with them where I have had to replay videos parts 20 or 30 times to get it. Sometimes I don't understand what is being said and other times I just can't focus. 

We also talk about the importance of taking notes while doing work. I stress that the brain can always remember better when you take action to write your work down. "You don't need to write everything down, but you should write down the basic steps you used to solve the problem. Not only do you want to increase your chances of remembering a problem, but you want to be able to look back on your notes when you have a question."

The Digital Worksheet

35 minutes

Since many of these questions are basic exponent questions, I tend to use this assessment early in unit. However, you might also want to give this toward the end before a difficult summative assessment (as a type of warm up). 

I have students get their pen or pencil and paper out. I help by handing out laptop computers of the worksheet. If students want a printed copy (for whatever reason), I print out the worksheet for them. 

The worksheet itself can be found on this link: 

https://sites.google.com/site/thecinemathproject/videos-by-topic/test-prep/new-york-tests/grade-8-test-prep/law-of-exponents

I've also included the file in the resource section. The instructions are fairly straight forward. 

  1. Solve each question and show your work on paper. 
  2. Submit your answers online (I create self grading Google Forms so the students can see how they did)
  3. Create a question that is based on but slightly more difficult than a question from this worksheet. 

Review

10 minutes

Here we review how the assessment went. It is more than a conversation about what they got right or wrong, but a chance to review their ideas on each question. 

For example, there was this question: 

(5^4 x 5^7)/5^8

I would ask them how they would approach it if it was 

(125^4 x 25^7)/625^2

This type of extension turns the standard question into a common core question. It goes from an automatic process to one that needs to be tinkered with in order to solve.

The idea is to use each of these questions as an opportunity for reflection. 

Exit Ticket

10 minutes

During the assessment, I ask students to create a question that is slightly more difficult, but based upon, one of the questions from the worksheet. Here I pick 5 that I like and show the class. They have about 1-2 minutes to answer each question and I collect them at the end. It is to see how much this process helped. I highly recommend giving this a shot. Student created questions are always fun to read and will make the members of your class a critical part of the assessment process.