Thursday, May 23, 2013

I just said that...

Today in my algebra 1 class we were working on applications of quadratics. I went over some very cool (at least I thought they were cool) demonstrations, some students go to throw things, etc. yesterday. Today we tied that into the quadratic formula and the vertex. We started working on a worksheet that outlined the equations that we would be using, and also a few start up questions based on what we had talked about yesterday.

The first 2 questions:  How can you determine what the maximum height is that an object reaches? How can you determine the time an object is in the air? My students were all quick to answer the first question: Find the vertex. At that point I thought great! This class will be awesome!!!

The second question required a little bit more thought, because they all assumed the x axis was distance, and not time. But it was not long until they figured out they needed to solve for x (or t) using the quadratic formula. Again, YES!!!

That is when we crashed and burned. Next problem: You shoot a basketball, here is your initial height and velocity, how high does the ball go into the air.

Them: Blank stares. "I'm confused."

 Me: #$@#$%@#%@#%#!!!!!!!!

Where is the disconnect?

I get to teach this lesson again in 15 minutes. I hope we can make this connection, and if anything changes I will let you know.

But this reminded me of a post from @edtechdev on Twitter. "There are 26 sheep and 10 goats on a boat. How old is the captain?"

I hope it is me, because I can fix me. But I also hope its not me, because I feel like I make connections to math and the real world often. I will change up my approach soon and hopefully things will go a little more smoothly. Thanks for your thoughts!!!

The second time I thought the class, the about half of the class knew what was going on! I changed up my delivery a bit, so I am thinking maybe that had something to do with it.

1 comment:

  1. Ahh....the disconnect. I really don't think students are use to making these connections. I agree that it's very frustrating when it seems so obvious to us. One thought: whatever you did differently the 2nd time, make note of that change so you remember for next year. :)