## Reflection: Adjustments to Practice Solving Equations by Constructing Arguments (Day 1 of 2) - Section 5: Example: What's Your Task on Part 1?

In the BetterLesson Community Feedback at the very bottom of this lesson, you can see an exchange that I had last Spring with a teacher named Aaron (alternatively see an image of the original dialogue here).

Aaron made a suggestion, I responded with my thinking about both this particular task and some of the context surrounding it, and then Aaron posted his gracious reply.

Now, I've been helped by this project in just the same way that I hope to help other teachers.  Aaron's original suggestion and question about the order that I name properties was spot on, and as I got to teaching this project again this year, I realized that it was a much better approach than what I tried a year ago.

I'm leaving the original photos up for comparison, but here's a picture of what I did this year.  I'm really not sure I would have come around to this without the opportunity to dig into it with a colleague.  This is a challenging project to teach: it's pretty abstract, it feels like a lot of work to the kids, and it's demanding on their focus.  Having the chance to discuss it - even a little - made it so much better this year.

With this new ordering in play, I framed new questions about what we can ask every time we use an inverse operation to solve an equation.  They are:

1. Am I allowed to (add/subtract/multiply/divide) on both sides of this equation?  Yes, because of the ______ property of equality.
2. Why would I want to do that?  Because the (additive/multiplicative) inverse property says that (sum/product) of a number and its (a/m) inverse is (0/1).
3. Where did it go?  By the identity properties, we know that x + 0 = x and 1x = x, so we don't have to write the identity elements.

Adjustments to Practice: Reconsidering the Order that Properties are Used

# Solving Equations by Constructing Arguments (Day 1 of 2)

Unit 3: Solving Linear Equations
Lesson 5 of 12

## Big Idea: To build a great argument, it always helps to start by stating the obvious.

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Standards:
Subject(s):
Math, Proofs, Algebra, Linear and Nonlinear Equations, equation solving, properties (Algebra)
43 minutes

### James Dunseith

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