Reflection: Intervention and Extension Distributive Property and Number Tricks - Section 3: Practice


While walking around, I noticed that many students were struggling to write two different expressions for Step 3 of magic trick #1.  I also noticed that some students were not noticing the differences between magic trick 1 and 2.  I stopped the group work and wrote these expressions on the board: 2(x + 3), 2x +3, 2x + 6 and 2(x+6).  I asked students if any of these expressions matched the end of either of the magic tricks.  Students participated in a Think Pair Share.

 I called on students to share their ideas and I pushed them to use algebra tiles to prove their thinking.  Students were able to explain that 2x + 6 and 2(x +6) were not equivalent, since if you double x + 6 you end up with 2 x blocks and 12 unit blocks, or 2x + 12.  Students were also able to identify that 2(x + 3) and 2x + 3 were not equivalent.

In our discussion, one student asked whether the expression (x+3)^2 would be equivalent to 2(x + 3).  I turned the question to the students and asked them what (x+3)^2 would represent.  One student explained that since it was raised to the second power, it would represent (x+3) (x+3).  I showed students how they will multiply expressions in later grades, and then I asked them to help me combine like terms.   Students were able to see that (x+3)^2 and 2(x+3) were not equivalent.  

  Intervention and Extension: Equivalent Expressions Discussion
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Distributive Property and Number Tricks

Unit 6: Expressions, Equations, & Inequalities
Lesson 16 of 20

Objective: SWBAT: • Represent number tricks using words, algebra tiles, and algebraic expressions • Define and apply the distributive property • Identify equivalent expressions

Big Idea: What is the distributive property? Is 4(x +3) equivalent to 4x +12? How do you know? Students work to demonstrate the distributive property using algebra tiles and algebraic expressions.

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Math, Algebra, equivalent algebraic expressions, Expressions (Algebra), distributive property, 6th grade, master teacher project
  50 minutes
kid at chalkboard
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