Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Solving Equations

This is one of my favorite things to teach. This is the basis of Algebra. I tell my kids all the time...if you can solve an equation, you can do anything. This year I didn't have to get as in-depth with solving equations because my Algebra I and Algebra II students were pretty good at doing it already. SCORE!

Since they pretty much were ok with basic equations, we skimmed it and jumped right in to more difficult equations. These foldables I got from Sarah at Math=Love.

I really liked the multi-step equations foldable. It was pretty straight forward and easy to follow. If my students got stuck, I'd have them go look at this foldable and tell me what all they've checked for and what they need to do next. Eventually they quit asking. 

Absolute value equations came next. What I used isn't a foldable, but I think this was pretty effective.
 Percent of change. All they really needed in order to do this was a formula. I have a binder full of pre-printed foldables and notetaking items, so I used these little clipboards for the formula. We just did a worksheet together on the other page for our guided practice.
 Proportions were next. We talked about what proportions were and how we can solve for an unknown variable in a proportion using cross multiplication. I actually tell my students we "butterfly multiply" because it makes a cute little butterfly, and they seem to remember that more than a lot of things.
Solving literal equations...this is kind of a challenge for a lot of students. Maybe the name of it alone makes it intimidating...I'm not sure. I made this little flow chart foldable that seemed to help students slow down and think about the process. We then practiced with a bunch of different formulas.

I've done all kinds of activities to enforce these ideas. I have scavenger hunts, Bingo, grid games, so on that I use both as practice and as review throughout the year. I love equations. I hope you find this stuff useful for you. Happy teaching!

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