Magic Rings

A good friend of mine Brian McBain showed me this construction with two paper rings taped together. I had two of my daughters predict what would be made from cutting down the middle of both rings. Watch below.

They also wanted to make a survey to see what you would predict. Can you do us a favour? Watch the start of this video. Pause the video and make a prediction. Enter your prediction on the google form below. Then watch to see what is created! Have fun.

Can’t see the video or survey? Click through to the post

The Orr team thanks you for participating. If you teach a class go ahead and share this with them. We would love to see what other kids predict.

Sum It Up! 

Here is a small strategy I used for our review day today.

In Advanced Functions we were reviewing average rates of change and instantaneous rates of change.

Instead of just doing problems from the book I organized the rate problems in 4 sets, polynomial, rational, trigonometric, and exponential/logarithmic functions. Each set had 3 problems.

I organized the class in groups of 3 and gave each group a set. They were to complete the problems and check the answers.

The kicker here was that the sum of the 3 answers in a set was written on the board.

img_0464

If the group got all questions correct their sum of their answers would match correctly. But…… If one was wrong they had to check all solutions and decide which needed fixing.

First, this small change made all groups work more carefully than usual. And second, when they had to double back, you could see them rationalizing which answers “had” to be correct and which answers were “toss ups”.

It was a great tool for students to self assess and evaluate their own readiness.

double desks

After each group completed a set they would swap with another group… Eventually completing all sets.

Better Questions – Two Truths & One Lie

During these last few days of class we have been completing problem after problem to prepare for our exams. I wanted to start class off with a different question than “What problems should we take up?”

I’ve used and played the game Two Truths and One Lie as an ice breaker before (first read about it in Marian Small & Amy Lin’s book More Good Questions)  and it popped into my head when I read this weeks blog post from ExploreMTBos.wordpress.com. Having students develop two truths and one lie about a math concept seemed super intriguing. The openness of this task made me eager to see what they would come up with. It would give my huge insight to what they know and what we would need to work on too.

This image was waiting for my 10th grade class when they came in.

Screen Shot 2016-01-25 at 12.40.35 PM

Screen Shot 2016-01-25 at 1.49.00 PM

They worked in pairs as a team to develop the truths and lie. I overheard great discussions on what should be considered truth and how to choose a lie. I loved the variety of what they chose. No two groups had the same.

Here is one:

IMG_0462

After writing their statements on a sticky note they were to trade stickies with another group and identify which statements were true and which was the lie. This was the best part! They were competitive. I overheard groups saying “prove it” or “show why that’s true”. They were demanding each other to see work and evidence. They weren’t accepting guesses! The vocabulary was amazing too. Afterward I had them all write their truths and lies up on the board. We went through each statement discussing the strategies needed to verify.

IMG_0460

IMG_0461

I also ran the same activity in my 12th grade Advanced Functions class. Here was their function: Screen Shot 2016-01-25 at 2.34.42 PM

and their stickies:

IMG_0455

IMG_0457

Afterward I asked the class what we could do to make the activity better. Here are some suggestions I’ll try next time.

  • A point should be awarded for getting the two truths and a lie correct and not for “stumping” another group.
  • Each group should get their own function to create statements for. Then in each match the opposing team would have to verify everything. Lots of practice and lots more variety.
  • We ended up giving a point to groups who found errors in another groups statements.

Also thinking of putting a question like this on my next assessment/test. Have the student write and indicate which is the truth and which is the lie. Or give 3 statements and have them generate a graph or equation where two statements are true and the other is a lie.

If you have any other suggestions on how to change/modify this activity I’d love to hear about them.

 

One Best Thing

The MTBoS Blogging initiative has begun! Check out the two options to blog about. 

I choose option 1 which is writing about something good that happened during the day.

Week 1: One Good Thing

Today was a good day! In my mailbox was this little package.

IMG_0408

It’s a package created & designed to make students feel amazing!

It’s from Knowledgehook.

Knowledgehook is an ed tech company specializing in  creating “engagement tools to measure and improve student learning“.

My students have been completing practice questions using their Homework product. An added, amazing bonus is when a student completes a mathalon (completing the majority of questions from the course) Knowledgehook sends in the mail a real (heavy duty) medal. Along with it is a pennant we can hang in the room.

Today a student in my class got that medal! We presented it to him in front of the class. IMG_0411
He looked a tad embarrassed, but I could see he was super proud! Big smiles. Later he told me he was going to wear it home to show mom!

That was today’s good thing.