Reflection: Student Ownership Solving Quadratic Trig Equations (Day 1 of 2) - Section 2: Connecting to Prior Knowledge


A few of my higher level students had some fun figuring out exercise 2 in the Algebraic form. I observed many different solution methods throughout the classroom. Some students factored out the x and then solved using the zero product property (that is how I would’ve done it!). Others added x to both sides then divided by x to obtain y=1/2. They incorrectly left their solutions at just that, without accounting for possible values of x. And then some students just sort of used their logic and number sense to figure out the solution.

Here is an example of a student’s work who took this logical-type approach: Interesting Student Solution Method. When he presented, many of my students were confused at how he obtained that y could equal 1/2 by his work. I stepped in and wrote what was in red after the student expressed that he was having difficulty explaining it to everyone. Interestingly he understood, but couldn’t explain his thoughts to the class. I wish I would’ve had more time to really draw his thoughts with some questions to help him explain it to the class. But due to time, I stepped in and explained what I wrote in red. This students was able to do a great job explaining that if y did equal 1/2 then we would know that x can be any value. He also did a great job explaining that y could also be any value if x=0. I think this really helped to clarify for many of my students what the solution they were obtaining really meant. Some students had the misconception that y=1/2 AND x=0 instead of the fact that y=1/2 OR x=0.

  Student Ownership: Exercise 2 - Interesting Solutions
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Solving Quadratic Trig Equations (Day 1 of 2)

Unit 9: Trigonometric Equations
Lesson 10 of 16

Objective: SWBAT use their knowledge of quadratic equations to solve quadratic trig equations.

Big Idea: The class works together to review methods of solving quadratic equations and make connections to quadratic trig equations.

  Print Lesson
Math, Precalculus and Calculus, Trigonometry, PreCalculus, Solving Trigonometric Equations, quadratic trigonometric equations, inverse trigonometric functions, 12th Grade
  55 minutes
student solutions to algebraic form
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