Unit One: Matrices

Okay, I feel the need to finally get my act (read: ass) in gear. Misscalcul8 has been putting me to shame all summer long, working on creating skill lists and other helpful items. Hey, some of us like to relax on our summer vacation (and travel, and take classes, and move). For much of the time there wasn’t a whole lot I could do anyways, since I haven’t taught the school’s curriculum yet and didn’t have access to it until a few weeks ago. *excuses end here.*

What I have decided will be most helpful to my own process (and perhaps to others out there) is to do this unit by unit as I go along. I don’t think mapping out my school’s self-designed curriculum is going to be exceedingly helpful to anyone, so this “grab-bag” unit approach makes more sense to me.

The first unit is going to be on matrices. [Note to self: be able to spell matrices correctly without doubting self every time I type/write it.]

The Skillz:

  • Create a matrix using given/collected information. Label rows & columns appropriately.
  • Translate the information in a matrix to written (or verbal) sentences. Describe what the matrix represents.
  • Add (or subtract) two matrices. Know the “rule” for adding matrices (when can/can’t you add them?).
  • Multiply a matrix by a scalar.
  • Multiply two matrices. Know the “rule” for multiplying matrices (when can/can’t you multiply them?).
  • Find the inverse of a matrix. TI skill.
  • Solve a matrix equation using an inverse matrix. TI skill.
  • Solve systems of linear equations using matrix equations.

Other thoughts:

  • Students should probably know what identity matrices are…not sure how to make this into a good “skill”.
  • Not sure if I need to do anything with determinants.

Am I missing anything? an eyebrow?

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