Reflection: Staircase of Complexity Solving for x - Section 3: Discussion


I really like how this task shows two equations that are essentially the same but the second one has two variables instead of one.  I think this is a useful way for students to learn how to isolate x in both cases, rather than taking them on as two separate processes. Students who can solve multi-step equations for x when the answer is an integer often have trouble solving for a variable in terms of another variable. To me, this increase in complexity makes a lot of sense and I think it will make this work easier for students, both conceptually and in terms of the skill needed to solve.

  Adding in another variable
  Staircase of Complexity: Adding in another variable
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Solving for x

Unit 1: Introduction to Algebra: Focus on Problem Solving
Lesson 12 of 14

Objective: SWBAT solve linear equations in one variable and solve linear equations in two variables for one of the variables. SWBAT compare one variable and two variable equations with the same operations.

Big Idea: How do I get x alone? Students compare linear equations in one variable to linear equations in two variables and solve for x in both cases.

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  60 minutes
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