In Algebra 1, I was the king of solving for *x*. Algebraic manipulation was fun and satisfying, and I was good at it. But my confidence was shaken when I encountered a test question of the variety 4*x* + 5 = 4*x* – 3. After subtracting 4*x* from both sides, I was … Continue Reading ››

# Category Archives: Algebra

# The Polar-Cartesian Connection

The Web Sketchpad model below (and here) shows the function *f(θ)* = 1 – cos 2*θ* in both Cartesian and polar form. For each graph, the independent variable appears as a red bar that corresponds to a particular value of *x* (for Cartesian) or *θ* (for polar). The red bar has … Continue Reading ››

# Introducing Web Sketchpad at the 2021 NCTM Annual Meeting

NCTM’s Virtual 2021 Annual Meeting ran from April 21 through May 1, and in Session 299 Daniel Scher, Karen Hollebrands, and I presented an on-demand video workshop to introduce Web Sketchpad (WSP). Even if you weren't able to attend the conference, you can still take … Continue Reading ››

# The Perimeter Problem

When the Metamorphosis team of content coaches meet at their New York office, the day is filled with Qi Gong, video case analysis, good food, and—best of all—a mathematical challenge for everyone to investigate and discuss. These problems are chosen to be accessible across a wide range of grade levels and to allow for a variety … Continue Reading ››

# Adding and Subtracting Integers

A recent post on the my NCTM discussion group asked about tools to help students visualize and understand addition and subtraction of integers.

I always found this confusing for some of my Algebra 1 students, mainly because they had been told to memorize some rules about whether to add or subtract the two integers and … Continue Reading ››