Super Math Teacher

The thoughts of a middle school math teacher

Slope and Linear Equations

on November 10, 2017

Quarter 2 is my favorite quarter of the year.  Mainly because of the content in Algebra 1.  We have just finished functions, and are ready to start Linear equations.  Of course, there are 2 days of class before the 8th grade trip for Week Without Walls to Mui Ne.

WHat better way to start then to utilize the computer lab.  I created a Desmos activity (Intro to Slope).  Okay, so that was tricky, and I spent 1 day creating it, and another 3 days tweaking what I had.  Still, for my first time creating an activity, I think I did OK.

slope 1

This gave some interesting responses.  Some students thought that A was the only one going downhill.  Others thought A would be the most fun.  Some thought A was suicide.  Reading the responses gave some insight into student thinking about slope.

When students finished with the Desmos activity, they then used Desmos to graph some equations and see how changing the constant or coefficient changed the graph.  Interesting comparisons were made by students.  I enjoyed watching students play with Desmos, but could tell that they were trying to determine the answers.  Many students had forgotten what a constant was, which made the question “Describe what happens to a graph when a constant is added” difficult to answer.

Today’s lesson definitely was one with high engagement and I look forward to reading student responses in Desmos over the weekend.  I have high hopes for this unit, if today was any indication.




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