Friday, February 16, 2018

Absolute Value Inequalities: Error Analysis (Printable)

I created an error analysis activity for my students that includes the most common errors that I've seen throughout my duration as a teacher....for Absolute Value Inequalities.

Here is a link to the file if you are interested.  It's a link to Teachers pay Teachers, but don't worry....its free.

Absolute Value Inequalities: Error Analysis

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Celebrating Mistakes

Today we (or rather I) celebrated mistakes in my classroom.  This is a no effort lesson plan that I rely on once in a while and is very effective.  

Before Class:
Generate problems for the students to complete (more than enough for the class period).  That's it!

During Class:
I review a few examples with the students before we begin the 'activity'.
Randomly pick a student to choose a number from 1 to however-many-problems-you-generated.  I write that problem on the board and the students complete it at their seats.  I also warn the students to write neatly because their work will be displayed for the entire class to see.  
Once the students have completed the problem I randomly pick a student and take a photo of their work with my iPad and display it on the apple TV.  Warts and all.

Note:  I am very unhelpful when the students are working on the problem at their seats.  I want the class to see THEIR work, not mine.  I tell the students that I LOVE when they make shows that they're trying and their brains grow when they make a mistake.  This is great formative assessment.  
I also enjoy the fact that the students can see that they are not the only ones possibly struggling this the topic.  It's perfect to not be perfect.  

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Four 4s Posters

A few months ago I created these Four 4s posters from 1-100.  If you're not familiar, these are problems where you can use exactly four 4s to get a certain number.  Operations such as plus, minus, multiplication, division, exponents, square roots, and factorial can be used.  And of course parenthesis.  Be careful that you only use the number 4.  For example, don't use a 2 as an exponent.  And be careful that you use exactly four 4s....not three 4s or five 4s.  

I wanted something for the early-finish students.  When a student finishes their classwork early, he can try to figure out one of the open numbers.  As a student would determine one of the numbers, she would show it to me for confirmation, write her solution next to the number and sign her name.  

And yes, you can find solutions on line and I addressed this right away with the students.  You can find one such website here.  I told the students that we wouldn't be looking these things up online, we wanted to see what we could do on our own.  As you can see from the image below, I believe the students are complying with our agreement.  

Some of my students are really into this.  One student has 10 of the numbers and another student has 12 of them.  Keep in mind that I have over 100 students, so these two students are really going to town.  When I first posted the numbers and explained how it works, a few students were so excited, with one student saying, "I WILL get my name on that poster!".