Reflection: Student Ownership Modeling Equations and Functions with Factoring - Section 2: Area Model


I was quite pleased with the number of different models students came up with during this activity.  My goal is for students to make some sort of attempt even if unsure when working on modeling a problem as this provides buy in and a starting place for understanding.  When we collected them on the board and I ask the students to evaluate them, most students had something to say about at least one of the models.  I find it helpful to put check or x marks next the equations so students get a visual tally of the class opinion.

The hardest thing about this activity is to not guide the students toward the right opinion, at least too quickly.  This is a skill I have picked up as I repeated this activity.  It gets easier each time to learn to guide the flow.  My hint would be to keep quiet as much as possible.  If students seem reluctant to participate, I encourage them by saying that they can comment on something they like or don't like.  This usually gets them going since they don't feel pressured to declare THE correct solution.  I have also used the strategy of putting check marks next to their names in my grade book.  Even though I don't tend to do anything with these marks, the students don't know that and it creates a sense of accountability.

  Student Ownership: Lots of Models
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Modeling Equations and Functions with Factoring

Unit 3: Polynomials
Lesson 11 of 15

Objective: Students will be able to model and solve equations with factoring.

Big Idea: Students will use multiple techniques to solve equations modeling area and the height of falling objects.

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Math, polynomial equation, Algebra, Algebra 2, master teacher project
  50 minutes
image modeling equations and functions with factoring
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