Classroom Resources

What real math looks like.

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Tasks

*Note: Tasks are most successful when adapted for each unique group of students. No one knows your students like you do. Adapt/supplement these tasks with appropriate scaffolds, extensions, etc (see supports section below for some suggestions). Task time as stated in these documents will vary based on length of class period, students' current level of performance, prior experience, etc.

*Mobile device users may have difficulty accessing some of the linked resources. We are working towards a solution. In the meantime, all resources can be viewed on non-mobile machines.


Visual Patterns

This week-long* cycle introduces students to linear visual patterns and provides them with opportunities to collaborate with peers, compare their strategies with those of their classmates, analyze and reflect on their problem solving approach, and communicate their understanding through writing.


Basketball and the quadratic formula

This task presents students with a problem that will require the use of a new skill - the quadratic formula. Students should work towards a solution until they hit a dead end and discover the need for an additional strategy. At this point, group presentations take place. During the mini lesson, the teacher reveals and models the use of the quadratic formula and gives students time to apply it in an effort to fully solve the original problem.



Basketball Models and Analysis

This week-long* cycle asks students to apply their knowledge of quadratic functions to create and analyze models of their own basketball shot. Students are first grounded in a common problem before they are expected to complete this independent task and writing piece.

Note: The framing section on page 2 refers to an image. The image is this interactive graph


Discovering Trig Ratios

In this task, students are guided through a discovery of the trig ratios (sine, cosine, and tangent). By the end of this experience, students should have a basic understanding of these ratios and how they connect to the relationship between sides and angles of a right triangle. 

Note: This task was adapted from a wonderful resource, Mathematics Vision Project.



Dilations

This task gives students the opportunity to develop an understanding of the concept of dilations, including a discovery of its key components, by dilating their initial using a compass and straightedge. This slideshow may be used to assist in framing and debriefing the task.  


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Supports


Problem Solving Tool

My students were struggling to find entry points to open-ended problems and to organize/communicate their problem solving process. In response, my department collaborated to create this tool. As a result, students are independently able to begin the problem solving process. They also find consistency from problem to problem, rather than approaching each as a completely new experience.


supporting mathematical thinking

This is a tool to support teacher reflection and mindset when planning and facilitating daily lessons in order to optimize mathematical thinking in the classroom. 



Problem Write Up

My students were struggling to communicate their problem solving process through writing, so I created this tool to help students organize their thinking and make connections between writing in other content areas. The outcome was more independent, complete, and structured problem write ups.


Rubric Analysis

This activity is intended to support students' understanding of the expectations of a rubric. It does so by guiding students as they break down the language of the rubric and use it to color code a model written product. While this particular document focuses on a specific rubric and task, it can and should be adapted to fit other contexts.



Double Entry Journal

My students struggling to understand and explain why they were executing procedures, so my department adapted this tool. The outcome was students providing rationale for their procedures and clearer communication of these procedures, both verbally and in writing.