## Loading...

# Algebraic Expressions and Equations for Shape Patterns

Lesson 16 of 20

## Objective: SWBAT write algebraic expressions and equations of shape patterns by exploring relationships in a table

## Big Idea: Students describe "what they see" in shape patterns as algebraic expressions and equations.

*35 minutes*

#### Introduction

*10 min*

I'll begin by telling students the objective: write linear expressions (and equations) to represent patterns.

Students may need examples of patterns that are described by algebraic expressions. Examples may include $25 per hour could be written as 25h. If you are x years old and have a sibling that is 3 years older, your sibling's age can always be found by x + 3.

The patterns today are geometric in nature.

The example pattern shows how students are to solve the remaining problems. You may want to have pattern blocks available for students to use. It may suffice just to show the pattern using a document camera or SmartBoard.

We'll examine the first 3 stages and look for a pattern of how many pieces are needed at each stage. The first few are shown in the given table. The table is just an input/output or function table with a middle column. The middle column is key to creating the expressions.

Students will quickly see that each stage has two more pieces than the previous stage. I will ask students to either draw or model stages 4 and 5.

Now I will ask students to describe the pattern. If necessary, I will tell them that the missile is made up of the body and the flames. The body is made up of the triangle, the square, and the trapezoid. The flames are made up of the non-rectangular parallelograms. Under the "What I See" column I will write "BODY + FLAMES".

We will then notice that the stages grow in this manner (starting with stage 1):

Stage 1 --> 3 + 2

Stage 2 --> 3 + 4

Stage 3 --> 3 + 6

Stage 4 --> 3 + 8

I'll ask: What do you notice about the body? Students will notice that the number always remain at 3. Then I'll ask: What do you notice about the flames? Students may notice that the flames increase by 2 each stage. More importantly I'll ask: How does the stage number relate to the flames? Eventually students will notice that the flames are twice the stage number.

When we reach stage n, watch out for students who treat this stage as if it is stage 5. Explain because there is a variable n, this could be any stage. I'll give students a minute to see if they can write an expression that would find the total parts based on stage n.

If they are stuck, I'll ask: "What did we notice about the body?" Answer: it always is 3. "What did we notice about the relationship between the stage number and the number of flames?"

This should lead students to writing an expression: 3 + 2n or 2n + 3. Some may have written 3 + n + n. This is also okay. Especially if a group wrote that they saw "Body + Flame + Flame".

The third question could be solved in a number of ways. The simplest may be to write an equation 103 = 2n + 3. Solve for n. Some may use a guess and check method by trying different stage numbers until they come to a total of 103 pieces.

However students solve it, it is a perfect moment for students to explain their thinking (**MP3**).

*expand content*

#### Problem Solving

*20 min*

The next four problems students will work on with partners. You may want to supply the orange square tiles for problem 1, toothpicks for problems 2 & 4 - I would avoid the rounded toothpicks as they will roll around on the desks, yellow hexagons for problem 3.

As students are working on each problem, I will walk around to check progress and ask questions as necessary. For each problem, I'll be especially interested in finding different descriptions for "What I See." This will allow for a good conversation about equivalent expressions at the end of the activity.

I will also be on the lookout for groups that try to treat the variable input as the next number in the sequence. For groups struggling to make an algebraic expression, I will ask them to look at the relationship between the input value (left most column) and the values in the "What I See" column.

On problem 3, some students may want to count the sides that meet. Remind them that perimeter is the distance around the outside of a shape, so those inner sides should not be counted. Though they will be counted in problem 4 since the shapes are made of toothpicks. If you don't have toothpicks around, you could always just use the term line segments.

After most groups have completed all 4 patterns, we will discuss solutions. I will make sure to bring up a variety of expressions that are equivalent, to show that different people had different yet valid ways of seeing the patterns.

Students almost always enjoy this activity and its a great way to develop their ability to use equations or expressions to model solutions to problems (**MP4**).

*expand content*

#### Exit Ticket

*5 min*

Students will now take a three-part exit ticket. I will count this as 5 points. 1 point for completing the table correctly in part 1, 2 points for a valid expression in part 2, and 2 points for a correct solution to 3 with supporting work or an explanation.

The pentagon pattern can be difficult to see. I may walk student through the first 3 stages of the pattern, to make sure they are correctly finding the perimeter. Other than that, they are on their own!

A score of at least 4 of 5 points will be considered a successful exit ticket.

*expand content*

##### Similar Lessons

Environment: Suburban

###### Solving Equations by Flow Chart - Working Backwards

*Favorites(9)*

*Resources(7)*

Environment: Suburban

Environment: Urban

- LESSON 1: Simplifying Linear Expressions by Combining Like Terms
- LESSON 2: Expand Algebraic Expressions Using the Distributive Property
- LESSON 3: Factor Algebraic Expressions Using the Distributive Property
- LESSON 4: Linear Expressions and Word Problems
- LESSON 5: Solving Addition and Subtraction Equations Using Models
- LESSON 6: Solve Addition and Subtraction Equations using Inverse Operations
- LESSON 7: Solve One-Step Equations Using Inverse Operations
- LESSON 8: Diagrams of Two-Step Equations
- LESSON 9: Speeding Tickets
- LESSON 10: Translate Verbal Statements to Inequalities
- LESSON 11: Graph Inequalities on a Number Line
- LESSON 12: Solve Inequalities Using Addition and Subtraction
- LESSON 13: Solve Inequalities Using Multiplication and Division
- LESSON 14: Solve Two-Step Equations Using Inverse Operations
- LESSON 15: Equation and Inequality Reteach - Fraction Coefficients
- LESSON 16: Algebraic Expressions and Equations for Shape Patterns
- LESSON 17: Simplify Expressions Containing Fractions by Combining Like Terms
- LESSON 18: Simplify Rational Number Expressions Using the Distributive Property
- LESSON 19: Writing Algebraic Expressions to Solve Perimeter Problems
- LESSON 20: An Introduction To Programming in SCRATCH