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# Unit 5: Systems of Equations, Two Day Exam

Lesson 20 of 20

## Objective: SWBAT demonstrate what they know about solving problems with systems of equations.

## Big Idea: Open-ended problem solving comes BEFORE multiple-choice! (Because, what's more important?)

*86 minutes*

#### Day 1: Problem Solving

*43 min*

To close out this most algebra-centered of my Algebra 1 units, I give students a two-day exam. The first day is for open-response problem solving, and the second day is a multiple-choice test. I tell students that the ordering signifies where my priorities lie, and that I hope they understand why I think the problem-solving part is more important.

There are two versions of the first day of the exam:

- Unit 5 Problem Solving Exam Version 1 sticks pretty closely to the kinds of problems students have seen over the course of the unit, and starts with a few context-free systems to be solved. I give this exam to students who have struggled during the unit, and need to show me at least the essentials of what they've learned.
- Unit 5 Problem Solving Exam Version 2 consists of a few released items from the Grade 10 Massachusetts state math exam. I've fleshed out a some additional steps for students to work through on each problem. I give this exam to my honors class and to any students who have been successful so far.

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#### Day 2: Multiple Choice

*43 min*

As I have described at the end of other units, I think that it's important for my students to practice answering multiple-choice exam questions, because for now, they remain a hurdle that students must leap on their way to a diploma and a wealth of post-graduation options. But I don't want to prioritize such structures too much. I use the free version of Problem-Attic to create my unit exams, because the site has released items from a wide variety of state exams.

I give students all of Friday's class to complete this part of the exam, and I run a quick item analysis to give individual grades. I share the details of my item-analysis process at the end of Unit 4.

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- UNIT 1: Number Tricks, Patterns, and Abstractions
- UNIT 2: The Number Line Project
- UNIT 3: Solving Linear Equations
- UNIT 4: Creating Linear Equations
- UNIT 5: Statistics
- UNIT 6: Mini Unit: Patterns, Programs, and Math Without Words
- UNIT 7: Lines
- UNIT 8: Linear and Exponential Functions
- UNIT 9: Systems of Equations
- UNIT 10: Quadratic Functions
- UNIT 11: Functions and Modeling

- LESSON 1: Solving Problems in Two or More Unknowns
- LESSON 2: Organizing a List and Guess & Check
- LESSON 3: What's In an Intersection?
- LESSON 4: Solving Systems by Graphing
- LESSON 5: Mastery Session: MP1, 5.1, and 5.2
- LESSON 6: From Guess and Check to Graphing Systems
- LESSON 7: Graphing Lines and Getting Stuff Done
- LESSON 8: Linear Equation Drills (Computer Lab)
- LESSON 9: Three Ways to Solve a Problem
- LESSON 10: From Graphing to Substitution
- LESSON 11: REALLY BIG IDEAS! Graphing vs. Substitution
- LESSON 12: An Intersection Point, and What Happens Around It
- LESSON 13: Algebraic Nuts and Bolts: Solving Systems
- LESSON 14: The Most Important Algebraic Idea of the Year
- LESSON 15: How Far Can Substitution Take You?
- LESSON 16: Sweet Problems with Two Variables
- LESSON 17: Many Lines Through One Point
- LESSON 18: Solving Systems by Elimination
- LESSON 19: Three Days of Review, Problem Solving, and Achieving Mastery
- LESSON 20: Unit 5: Systems of Equations, Two Day Exam