Functions and Relations INB Pages

27 November 2016
I ended up loving my Introduction to Functions unit!  So far, it’s been my favorite unit in Algebra 1.  

The first day, I talked about domain and range and used my domain and range foldable.  You can see in the picture that I had my students highlight the domain and the range in the table, mapping, and graph.  Also, on the same page, I gave the definition for function and the Vertical Line Test.

Next, we did a card sort of functions and relations.  After only giving them the definition on the previous page, I had them work independently.  I checked in with them every two minutes or so.  I wanted them to THINK.  They did very well and I was impressed with their work.

The second day, I introduced function notation.  I have a previous post about how I teach function notationThis function notation page corresponds with that post.  

I also used this function machine hamburger book from Math=Love.  We went back and forth filling in part of the hamburger book and part of the function notation sheet.  Next year, I want to somehow combine the two into a more cohesive set of notes, instead of jumping around.

I had a review day after these two lessons, because I thought my students would struggle.  However, when I gave them their quiz, almost every Algebra 1 student made an A!  Yay!

I also have pages for writing a function rule and views of a function coming up soon.

Interpreting Graphs INB Page

25 November 2016
I was a little nervous to teach about interpreting graphs in Algebra 1.  However, it went really well and it was kind of fun!

First, I made this giant foldable.  I made it on legal paper, so it took the entire page of my student’s notebooks.  I'm really starting to love legal paper, ya’ll.  A half sheet of legal paper takes up the entire notebook page (nicely!).  Anyway, I used bubble letters for students to color in the emphasized words.  My students had a hard time deciding when to use a curve versus a line.

Interpreting Graphs, Sketching Graphs, and Relating Graphs to Events Foldable for Algebra 1

Interpreting Graphs, Sketching Graphs, and Relating Graphs to Events Foldable for Algebra 1

When we finished the foldable, I had my students each write a story.  Then, they traded with their partners and drew a graph that went with their partner’s story.  Next they drew a graph and their partner had to come up with a story that matched the graph.  We did a few rounds of this until the end of the class period.

Midsegments in Triangles Paper Folding Activity

19 November 2016
I love using this paper folding activity to help students discover the Triangle Midsegment Theorem.  This year, I had my students fold the triangle and glue it into their notebooks.

First, cut out a triangle (any type of triangle) and label the vertices with A, B, and C.

Midsegments in Triangles Paper Folding Activity

Fold A to C and pinch the midpoint.  Don’t fold all the way through. Label this midpoint L.

Midsegments in Triangles Paper Folding Activity

Fold B to C and pinch the midpoint again.  Don’t fold it all the way through. Label this midpoint N. 

Midsegments in Triangles Paper Folding Activity

Fold C down to the opposite side, connecting the midpoints. This is the midsegment of the triangle.  Draw the segment connecting L and N. 

Midsegments in Triangles Paper Folding Activity

With C folded down, fold B to C and crease.  With B and C folded, fold A to C and crease.  The triangle should be folded into a rectangle.

Midsegments in Triangles Paper Folding Activity

Ask students, “How does LN compare to AB”?  LN is half of AB.  This is part of the Triangle Midsegment Theorem.  

Then, ask students how else LN is related to AB.  If students can’t tell that it is parallel, have them use a straightedge to verify visually that the lines are parallel.

Midsegments in Triangles Paper Folding Activity

This activity takes less than five minutes, but helps my students visualize the theorem so much better!


16 November 2016
When I’m teaching congruent triangles, CPCTC always ends up being such a short lesson, because it seems so obvious to me.  That’s been ok for me in the past.  However, this year, I think I should have had my students work with CPCTC a little bit more.  I’ve been trying to keep up with our curriculum map, only to find out that it’s incorrect.  I could have spent more time in this unit and I wish I did!

Anyway, this is the page I used for CPCTC.  There are zero fancy things on this page.  It’s actually kind of lame.  I had the students copy down the proofs themselves.  Yeah, I’m not doing that again.  I have too many LD students for that to be a good teacher-choice.  I want to make a little proof booklet for CPCTC like I did for parallel lines and triangle congruence shortcuts.

CPCTC Interactive Notebook Page for Congruent Triangles Unit in Geometry

Also, learn from my fail.  Don’t have kids copy down the whole proof themselves.  :)  It ends up super messy and illegible.  

Using Doodles in Math Class

13 November 2016
My friend from Math Dyal has been so inspired by brain research that she's changed the way her students use their interactive notebooks.  Today, she's writing to share tips from her classroom.  You can find her at her blog, Math Dyal, and her TpT store under the same name.

Last week a district administrator and assistant principal randomly showed up in my classroom as we were working on a lesson on graphing lines. I am so used to observers popping in, I barely even noticed and went about my way. They stopped to talk to a group of students about what they were learning, and one of the girls in the group asked the administrator, "Do you want to see my notebook?" and proudly showed off everything we have been working in recently in her interactive notebook.  I LOVE having a tool like this that students actually use, refer to, and want to show off!

I've been totally inspired by Math Giraffe's brain research to allow plenty of opportunities for doodling and coloring with purpose in my notes. I love using an outline font for the title - my students always seemed to forget to write the title, so now they fill in the bubble letters instead.

Slope-Intercept Form Interactive Notebook Notes: Using Doodles in Math Class

When we took these notes for domain and range, I had them pick two different colors and use on to underline domain everywhere they saw it on the page and the other for range. Then when we found each, we used the corresponding color.

Domain and Range Interactive Notebook Notes: Using Doodles in Math Class

I love adding little pieces of clip art next to word problems; the students will color them in while they read through the problem. Plus it's easy to tell them where to go back to their notes, "We have an example of a problem like this on p. 24 - the cupcake problem."

Linear Equations Interactive Notebook Notes: Using Doodles in Math Class

Doodle borders and doodle underlines are my other favorites. They are so easy to pop on the page, and so many students love coloring them in - giving their right brain a chance to engage with the math. I keep a few markers and highlighters in the supply boxes in the center of each table, but several students like to bring in special gel pens, those fun clear highlighters, or sets of colored pencils.

Linear Equations Interactive Notebook Notes: Using Doodles in Math Class

In the end, the kids are engaged in taking notes about math and they are using their notes to refer back to when they need help with classwork, homework, or to study for a test. I consider anything that gets kids excited about math to be a win in my book!

Slope Interactive Notebook Notes: Using Doodles in Math Class

Function Notation Interactive Notebook Notes: Using Doodles in Math Class

Want to check out some of my doodle notes for your class? I have these awesome Literal Equations Notes to download on my blog. And these fun Polynomials Notes as a freebie in my TPT store! Happy doodling! 

One Variable Inequalities INB Pages

02 November 2016
My Algebra 1 students struggled with inequalities a lot more than I thought they would. When I taught this unit, I spent time solving one and two step inequalities before I jumped in to compound and absolute value inequalities.  They thought the one and two step inequalities were super easy, so I feel like I wasted time and could have gone faster through those concepts.  Now I know for next year…

Typically on review days, I do not have students add to their notebooks.  However, I had two awesome pages that summarized everything they had learned.  So, I had them add those two pages to their notebooks on the review day.

The first page was from Math=Love.  I used this page exactly as she did.  I didn’t insist that my students always write the variable first in the inequality.  At the beginning of the unit, we talked about how “x > 5” is the same as “5 < x”.  I want them to get used to seeing things both ways.  So, step 2 on the “to-do list” wasn’t necessary.

Solving and Graphing Inequalities in One Variable Interactive Notebook Page

Then, I used a page from Math Dyal.  She’s been inspired by Doodle Notes and created this page for students to doodle and color as they worked through the problems.  I liked the word problems that were included.

Solving and Graphing Inequalities in One Variable Interactive Notebook Page

In Algebra 1, I’ve started including more pages where students write in practice problems.  I’m loving it and I’m wondering why I stopped doing it earlier this year.  Anyway, as I was working through the compound inequality practice problems that I had them include, I had an epiphany.  Lots of my students were having trouble with the “and” inequalities.  They were only adding/subtracting from two of the parts of the inequality.  I had them write the inequalities separately, but it just felt strange.  So, I drew columns with a highlighter.  I explained that they had to add/subtract to EVERY part of the inequality.  The columns helped them see the three distinct parts so much better.  Next year, I’m going to start out explaining it this way.

Compound Inequalities Interactive Notebook Practice and Teaching Idea

Congruent Triangles INB Pages

01 November 2016
I think Congruent Triangles is my favorite unit of Geometry.  I also really like Right Triangles…  Anyway, I wanted to share some of the interactive notebook pages that I used from this unit.

First, I created a flip book for congruent figures.  It was the perfect lead-in to congruent triangles.

Congruent Figures Flipbook for Geometry Interactive Notebooks - perfect intro to congruent triangles

I still highlight parallel lines and the transversal for student to see the angle pair relationships.  I think it still helps them to see the relationships.  Some of them get so overwhelmed by the diagrams that they need it simplified.

Next, I used my triangle congruence foldable.  The definition and an example are under each flap.  I had my students draw the parts of a right triangle at the bottom of the page as a reminder.  

Congruent Triangles Foldable for High School Geometry Interactive Notebooks

I taught the triangle congruence shortcuts over two days.  The first day I did SSS and SAS.  Then, I did AAS, ASA, and HL on the second day.  I created (ugly) hamburger books for practice.  The front was a bunch of copied and pasted diagrams from different places.  Then, inside I had a bunch of screenshots of proofs.  I wish I had time to type out a prettier version, but that’s going to have to be a summer project.  You can read about some of the hints I use to help my students.

Congruent Triangles Interactive Notebooks for High School Geometry Interactive Notebooks

Congruent Triangles Interactive Notebooks for High School Geometry Interactive Notebooks

As a review, I used this cut and paste activity from Secondary Math Shop.  I’ve used a version of this activity before, but I liked the interactive notebook version of this activity this year.  I had my students work with a partner to make sure their answers were correct.  Then, I displayed the answers.  I also required that students mark all the diagrams.

Triangle Congruence Activity for Interactive Notebooks

Next, was CPCTC.  I forgot to take pictures of those pages, so I’ll post them once I do!

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