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.


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.

Guess Who & Polygraph Lines

As we come to the end of the semester review days are here. To help grade 9s review properties of linear relations we played Guess Who. Last September I ran Guess Who with my grade 12 Advanced Functions class with great success. I made up a new sheet for grade 9 with a variety of linear relations (graphs, equations, and tables).

Screen Shot 2015-06-12 at 1.07.16 PM

Guess Who game sheet

The students played a few rounds each! The questions coming out were pretty good! I overheard lots of “Does is show direct variation?”, “Does it have an initial value?”, “Is your graph decreasing?”
All great terminology I love hearing from my grade 9 applieds!!

Screen Shot 2015-06-12 at 1.12.05 PM

After a few rounds of “low tech” Guess Who, we broke out and “high tech” Guess Who —– Polygraph – Lines

Students use a class code to access the game. Round 1 is playing the orginal guess who with pictures of people against the computer. 
The system then links you up randomly with another student in your class. You take turns each choosing a graph and asking questions to guess your opponents graph! 

Screen Shot 2015-06-12 at 1.12.15 PM
Again, great questions and discussions here! I could see the deep thinking about what questions to ask to eliminate options. Desmos once again out does it! Linking up digital resources while keeping learning social!

These students have been great to teach this semester! I’ll miss them next year!!

Guess Who!!!

One of my kids’ favourite game is Guess Who…..remember this one?



You remember it! I wanted my students to practice recognizing characteristics of polynomials without having to just complete questions out of the text book… I thought this game could work great! When you play this game you ask characteristic questions about the person you have picked and try to narrow the choices down…..all before the other person has guessed yours!

Perfect for characteristics of functions!!! Could also be great for my grade 9s who will later learn characteristics of linear relations.

I put this “board” together for the possible choices.

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 8.52.31 AM


And kids will use dry-erase markers and “paper protector” sheets so they can re-use the Game boards.


Here are some pictures of my students playing the game

September_08__2014_at_0126PMSeptember_08__2014_at_0125PM September_08__2014_at_0127PM September_08__2014_at_0134PM September_08__2014_at_0137PM

Game of Risk

Recently read a blog post of a review game …. Risk from Angie (@aeakland) . I love review games instead of just textbook questions… i adapted this game to be played in my MHF4U Advanced Functions class.

Here are the rules….

  • In teams, each team starts with 100 points. Write your points and names on the board.
  • Complete any of the Risk Questions in any order. (They are just the Review questions from the textbook).
  • For each question: After coming up with a solution, wager any or all of your points.
    • If you are correct – – add the points to your total!!! Yay!
    • If you are incorrect — subtract that many points from your total. Boo!
  • The top three teams with the most points were eligible to enter the draw at the end for the prize!!!

photo 4-2

Great things about the game…

Kids were cheering — when getting the problems right!……that doesn’t happen when just working on review problems from the book.

Kids were self /peer assessing their work — by betting they were deciding how confident they were on their work! They took their time, and thought about their answers making sense!

Kids were doing math!

The winning team won their choice of a geek sticker!