Saturday, November 3, 2012

Warm Up for i

Sometimes we have to relish in the little things, right?

This is a warm up I gave to my Algebra II students, just a couple days after they had first been introduced to i:

While I do like the warm up, what I'm really quite proud of is how I implemented/graded it.  When students felt like they had finished the warm up, I had them let me know.  I checked their work quickly.  If I liked what I saw, they were given the day's assignment (and a 100% for the warm up).  If not, they were given some verbal questions from myself, such as...

"You say i is imaginary, but you also say it's equal to -1?  Are you saying it's impossible (not real) to lose a dollar (-1)?"

"i is equal to the square root of 1?  But the square root of 1 is...?  Oh, so we need two symbols for the multiplicative identity now?"

"i is equal to i?  Try again.  This time tell me something."

Yes, I was harsh and sarcastic.  But this is an important concept.

Eventually, everyone had true sentences on his/her paper (which means everyone who came to class got a 100).

Each day I've been doing an "EOI Preview" as a warm up and I've been taking the highest 3-4 grades for the week.  This warm up gave everyone a chance to get an excellent grade in for the week, and I didn't let students move on until they could articulate the truth.

I know, I know...I really need to switch to Standards-Based Grading.  Sigh...

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