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What Math Teacher

Ahlf Junior High School
Searcy, Arkansas

Next year: 8th grade Pre-Algebra, Algebra IA

Who WandaB

I have a BS in Business Administration and spent several years in retail management. Because of this, I am results focused. After my three children started attending school, I worked in an elementary school assisting in the math department for grades K-6 in suburban St. Louis. After relocating to Arkansas, I completed the certification coursework for middle school and secondary math. I have taught 7th, Pre-algebra, Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II. This fall, I am beginning a new position in Searcy teaching Pre Algebra and Algebra IA. I will be completing my master's degree in May 2005.

As a teacher, I am continually searching for new and better ways to help increase to present topics to increase student understanding. I was a building technology leader for my previous school district and am very confident with the computer software I had at my disposal. In addition to computer and Internet experience, I have also used various calculators and software programs. In my classroom, I use a Smartboard and my students particularly benefit from interactive sites. What I am probably best at is combining (borrowing) various methods of introducing concepts and designing lessons to meet the needs in my classroom. I also enjoy interacting with other educators and am very open to sharing ideas.

Percent Equations - looking for part, whole, or % (4 Stars)

Once students understand how to write and solve proportions, they can solve almost any problem. This is particularly with percent proportions where they can find the part, whole, or percent. When taught separately, s harder for the student to see the relationship. This applet allows students to find any of the three parts of the percent proportion. Even better, the student can visually see why 25% of 200 is 50. The answer is also written in a form that students need to understand, especially the use of key What I found confusing on this applet was when solving for the unknown, the problem was rewritten instead of using the original proportion format. Understanding and using percent proportions is a difficult concept for most 8th graders. Substituting the known values into the original format and representing the unknown with a variable would be less confusing. Literally rewriting an equation in terms of the unknown is a very difficult concept and not the purpose of this lesson. (5 stars)

This is one of my favorite sites for helping student understanding balancing equations. In the equation 3x + 2 = 11 that they can usually see without any problem that they would have to subtract two from eleven because s the inverse of adding of two. Show this concept on both sides of the equation is as easy! Usually they t see a need or understand how to show their work in order to balance the equation. This applelet clearly demonstrates the concept of balancing equations. (4 stars)

What a wonderful way to explore the Pythagorean, understand the relationships between the square of the legs and the square of the hypotenuse, and practice the concept. Almost everything other year the concept of the Pythagorean Theorem is one of the open responses of our state benchmark exams for 8th grade. They have to be able to develop, use, and explain the concept. This site provides a wonderful opportunity for students to understand the history of the Pythagorean Theorem, how it and why it works, provides independent practice with guided feed back. Links to associated modules are also provided. (3 stars)

Just like the teacher information states, this game does involve logic as well as the ability to understand addition of integers. This activity would allow the students to have fun while practicing/reinforcing addition of integers and be a great cooperative learning activity.


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This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant DUE-0226284.
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s)
and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.