Reflection: Joy Quadratic Functions in Three Forms - Section 3: Completing the Square Examples


It's going to take a few days for students to feel comfortable completing the square, and when they see if for the first time, it's normal for kids to feel a little overwhelmed.

This might happen right away, or it might happen in one of the next few lessons as we really try to make sense of this new process, but at some point, students need a little reassurance that they're going to figure it out.  I tell students to remember that a few days ago, they'd never heard the word "discriminant" or how to compute one, or seen how to factor a quadratic trinomial, but that they're quickly getting better at both.  

I also ask students to think about the first time they learned about slope.  I ask, "When was that?  Sixth, seventh grade?"  Then, "Did you understand slope perfectly the first time you learned about it?"  We recognize that, year by year, with repeated exposure, slope makes more and sense.  "So I'm introducing you to this new idea called completing the square.  You're going to see it again, and each year, you'll get better at it.  I'm excited to be the teacher who first shows you how to complete the square -- let's see how much you can learn now."

A week from now, we'll again marvel at how far we've come!


  "In a Week, You'll Know This..."
  Joy: "In a Week, You'll Know This..."
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Quadratic Functions in Three Forms

Unit 10: Quadratic Functions
Lesson 6 of 21

Objective: SWBAT use the process of factoring and completing the square in a quadratic function to show zeros, extreme values, and symmetry of the graph.

Big Idea: An brief adventure in number theory provides some background knowledge for completing the square, then students get to practice manipulating quadratic expressions in different forms.

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u6 l6 sw extension with graphs l14 option p1
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