Making Math Connections Visually: Five Free Activities to Use in Your Algebra Class
Every student encounters algebraic concepts in their mathematics career. As teachers, it can sometimes be hard to help students grasp concepts they find abstract in nature. Technology can help by demonstrating those concepts in a new and intriguing way. By involving dynamic visualization and interaction, students can make connections that otherwise would have been difficult to see. In this post, we have highlighted five of our favorite algebra activities from the collection on the Math Nspired collection.
This lesson is designed to help students think of slope as a rate of change. As a result, students will be prepared to move to applications of linear functions where the change in one quantity is proportional to the change in another quantity.
Students may be familiar with the classic “two trains leave a station” scenario, but they may never have actually related the motion to the graph and equation that models the motion with distance as a function of time. In this lesson, students compare and contrast the motion of two trains and relate their motion to graphs of distance as a function of time.
Speaking of systems of equations, many students have a hard time understanding just what the solution to a system of equations actually means. In this activity, students will have an opportunity to balance a pair of equations simultaneously. Students will find that there are an infinite set of solutions to each individual equation, but only in certain cases will the two equations be balanced at the same time.
Composition of functions can often be challenging for students to fully internalize. This activity will guide students to explore functions and their compositions, and then apply what they’ve learned to an application that will help them create a better understanding of how function compositions work.
In this classic exploration of a quadratic relationship, students explore and optimize the relationship between the area of a garden with a fixed length of fencing and the lengths of the sides. Students will collect and graph data for multiple setups and then model the relationship with a quadratic.