This year I’ve committed to posting each unit of both my Algebra 1 and Algebra 2 INBs.
My district is moving to a standards based curriculum, and has identified priority standards for every course. These are the standards we are required to address and assess our students over, so they pretty much form our units.
I normally teach year-long courses (47 minute classes per day). However, due to a lot of district specific things involving SPED students, a new course introduction, and graduation requirements, this year I taught a block course (94 minute classes per day) of Foundations of Algebra first semester, which covered skill gaps students would need to find success in Algebra 1. This semester, I am teaching (most of) those same students Algebra 1 on a block schedule. This means I get to start Algebra 1 from the beginning in the same year and revise my activities and INB pages!
You can find my Algebra 1 (year long class) INB posts here:
And my Algebra 2 INB posts here:
And finally, my posts from this second round of Algebra 1 here:
The fourth standard we cover in Algebra 1 is A.CED.2 (again, but the first time we cover it with linear functions and this time we discuss exponential functions):
Create equations in two or more variables to represent relationships between quantities; graph equations on coordinate axes with labels and scales.
Skill 1: I can identify when a relationship is exponential
As mentioned in my post from my first time teaching this unit this year, my students put everything in the wrong place with a blank inside to this foldable, so I added some typed pieces on the inside of “ex” and “look for” so they would know where to put information and examples. We used the same card sort as I did the last time, but I had them work with a partner. After they finished the sort for the second time after we discussed the definitions, they split up the cards so that each of them had 1 graph, 1 equation, and 1 table for both linear and exponential functions, which they glued in for examples. This meant I needed less copies, and also the examples fit on their page more nicely.
Skill 2: I can graph an exponential function
I edited the instructional page on this to include tips for some of the things my yearlong Algebra 1 students constantly forgot, and I think it was a nice reference for this group of students to look at. I also changed one of the original functions I had used, because I didn’t realize it had a negative multiplier when I was using my snipping tool to get examples. We just moved the parentheses when we did it last time so that it would work out, but I just chose a different problem this time. I still think the linear example on here is the most important, because my students tend to just do the thing we just learned by rote and not actually think about it, and this is a good reminder that you NEED to think about it, in case something doesn’t fit the thing you JUST learned.
Skill 3: I can write an equation to represent an exponential function
I didn’t change anything on this page from the last edition – my students really excelled at this skill and I think there is an example for most problems they would encounter, like when the pattern is dividing or when the table is actually linear. This group of students struggles a lot more with their math facts, so we had to discuss a lot more how to figure out what the y-values were being multiplied by, since these students couldn’t just look at it and see the number.
Skill 4: I can write an equation to represent exponential growth or decay
I realized the last time I did this unit that this skill needed a lot more scaffolding. I put more examples in and put typed instructions for finding the rate/multiplier, since many of my students forgot to write the instructions last time and then were stuck. On the graph page, I included an x/y table, which was a small step that went a long way in my students remembering how to graph once they had written an equation. I like this iteration of these notes.
We also did the World Population Project again, but this time I did it before they took their test, and I think it helped them get a lot more practice before taking the test. Most of my students wrote all correct equations for the exponential growth and decay test questions!
You can find all of the files for these notes here, in PDF and Publisher form.