MTBoS Taught My Class Today

Except for Topology. That was all me…and the student presenter who taught for the first half of the class. But other than that, it was all me. 🙂

So here’s what I did today.

Got to work, had a free block first thing. Parent association was doing a breakfast thing for the faculty, so I went up and got myself a plate. Came back to my office and played the daily Set game from nytimes while I ate. Did a little work on my presentation for CMC South and in doing so went through my Evernote files. I found a rather well-populated tag for Coordinate Geo, which is my current unit so I opened it up and out fell my lesson plan for the day.

I start the class off with a warm-up (okay, this I wrote). Have a student put up a solution for each problem. Thumbs up/thumbs down for “do you agree/disagree” and we discuss the documentation of work.

Then I throw up this image:

DD 59b

The grid lines aren’t visible enough on the projector screen so I walk the kids through how to get to the dailydesmos page. [daily desmos, not just desmos] They stare blankly at it for a few moments before I tell them they need to reconstruct the graph on desmos before they can proceed. Students get themselves some parallel lines. I interject to show them that desmos will give you the coordinates for points of intersection and remind them that they need to make sure the side lengths are the same. Many “ahas” about how points with the same distance from the origin will have reversed coordinates (when lines are perpendicular).

Then we proceed to the Best Square video. We watch it twice because students didn’t realize what was going on the first time–totally expected. Much discussion ensues about whether Timon pronounces his name TEE-mon or TIH-mon. Consensus is that he has the best name. We discuss what information would be helpful in deciding who drew the best square. Coordinates, lengths and angles are all mentioned in both classes. I give them the coordinates and the angles. I ask the class if they really need the lengths after I’ve given them the coordinates and they agree that they don’t need them. Students start calculating distances. In my second time around, I assign each group one square to speed things along. Much better flow that way.

While the conversation about what made a square better than the rest didn’t really go anywhere deep, I was happy with the class. The combination of activities allowed students to apply some of the skills they’d been working on with distance formula and parallel and perpendicular lines, and it drove home the idea that coordinates are actually really handy things to think about and use to help them solve problems.

Since I just did all of this on the fly, I didn’t think to add in the Squareness activity! Maybe next year.


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