Saturday, November 30, 2013

Polar Coordinates and Equations--More than Pretty Pictures!

Great use for cardioid graphs!
Since our study of polar graphs and coordinates was abbreviated (and we had Thanksgiving in between) I wanted to provide a few resources for you to help with your test review, so here you go:

Written resources:
Video/Interactive Resources (most require Java):
  • Video tutorial of basics of polar coordinates and graphs
  • Great interactive site to explain polar
  • Interactive sites to create polar graphs (like our "web assignment") - found here and here 
  • And don't forget my new favorite website for a graphing calculator: Desmos!

If you find another resource that might help a classmate, please list it in the comments below.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Test Time!

OK, it's time for our next test, so what changes do you need to make to be ready for test #2?  What do you do to prepare for a math test?  Can you think of anything that I might do to make the questions more interesting?  

Here is a cool graphing applet to show transformations of sine and cosine graphs.  (You will have to allow Java for this applet to run, and click on the links on the left side of the screen.)

I have a growth mindset about making videos to help you, so here's attempt #2.  (I also got a bit of advice from my friend Mr. Gonzales who suggested a "Crash Course" type video.)

And here's a lower production video for a quick review of even and odd functions.  (It worked at home, but now it says "converting," so I hope you'll be able to view this video!!  Sigh.)

Are these review videos helpful at all?  Please let me know!  
What improvements or other suggestions do you have?  
I'm still learning!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Graphs of Sine and Cosine

For my first absence of the year (several of your teachers will be attending this training) I tried to create a video version of our notes.

I must admit, the video is pretty terrible, but the instruction is adequate. :)  You can hear my pen tap on the screen, I used a couple words wrong (function rather than transformation; stretch rather than shift) I am sometimes too quiet and sometimes too loud, and I think at one point, you hear my cat purring in the back ground! BUT, I have a growth mindset about preparing these types of lessons for you, so I won't give up after my first fail.  And I didn't want to learn how to edit because this has already taken me 3 hours to create!

So please enjoy my version of sine and cosine graphs.  The notes for this section are here, but I'll have copies for you in class.

If you don't completely understand everything, have patience (and a growth mindset).  A classmate may help you and/or I know you can find countless other resources online to help with the topic.  I'll return on Wednesday, and we'll continue the discussion about trig graphs, but we'll have even more transformation fun in store.

Once you finish the video, please complete the quick survey about 
your learning and understanding.

If you have any additional suggestions, concerns, or questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments!  Thanks, and have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

2013-14 Begins NOW!

Welcome to our class!  

I know we're going to have a great year together.

I started this class blog a couple years ago, and I plan to utilize it with our class again this year for both math and non-math posts.  Please look over the blog rules page before commenting.

For your first post, please briefly introduce yourself.  You may share something from your Mathography, or you may include something new.  You only need to write a sentence or two...just please write something that will help us know you a bit better.

To help you get to know me, one of my favorite sayings is "Whatever worth doing is worth doing well." (What does that say about me as a teacher and a person?   How could that possibly be a hint about our class?  Hmmm...)  Another bit about me: last year, we wrote 6-word memoirs and mine was "I love to help find solutions."  Do you get how that is math-y, teacher-y, and applies to my IS job?  I also love technology, so we will experiment with sites and tools I find.  I have been known to waste a lot of time looking for the perfect, fun font.

This summer, I spent a lot of time with my family--here, at a friend's lake house, and in Hot Springs, Arkansas. I also spent time with friends, where we tried new restaurants, talked school stuff, and went to movies. I also visited two Presidential Libraries, and I highly recommend visiting any of them around the country!  I learned how to grill vegetables, and I enjoy cooking and baking.  (I bet you will love the ginger snaps I bring you!)  I was kind of "craft-y" this summer, and I made about 100 magnets for different people.

I also took at least one picture every day this summer, and I plan to continue taking pictures every day during the school year!

Some teachers don't have much time off, and I did a LOT of school work this summer, but it was mostly for fun and just good learning.  I took a free online course through Stanford called "How to Learn Math," and I know you will benefit from what I learned there.  I love to read pretty much anything, but this summer, I spent most of my time with educational stuff.  I enjoy some YA fiction (Allegiant is released on 10/22!) and I am also looking forward to the movie Catching Fire (11/22!)

My examples were too long, and don't feel obligated to write that much, but I'll be happy with all of your posts.

I look forward to getting to know you, and I'm so excited about the new year!  
Get used to hearing about #growthmindset!
Thank you for your comments!  
(By the way, I moderate the comments, so they do not appear until I post them.  Sorry for any confusion!)

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Technology Survey

If you have trouble accessing this survey, please try the link here.

While you're here, why don't you follow me on Twitter and like our class Facebook page? ;)

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Hooray for the End!

I can't believe it's already time to end the year!  It seems like you were just here last week completing your math-ography and survey.

Here's one last post for you, and I would really appreciate your feedback.  I think it is very important to reflect and learn from each experience, so I would like to know what you think about our class and my teaching.  In addition, for my "other" job, I think your feedback about teaching in general could help teachers new to LHHS.  The last part of the questionnaire asks you to reflect a bit on your own year.

I have created this survey that you may complete at any time this week.  Your feedback will help me improve my teaching, but please be considerate about how you respond.  (I accept your constructive criticism, but please justify your responses--just like on our tests!)  You do not have to include your name, and you do not need to complete every question.

If you want to share your summer plans, feel free to post in the comments.  (My sister will be here in 2 weeks, so for me, summer starts with family fun!)

A few end of year quotes for you...

“Believe in your dreams and they may come true; believe in yourself and they will come true.”

“Nurture your mind with great thoughts; to believe in the heroic makes heroes.”

“Even a mistake may turn out to be the one thing necessary to a worthwhile achievement.”

Thanks so much for your time!
More importantly, thanks for a great year!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Math Memoirs

Not that anyone is counting or anything, but hooray for the last weeks of school!   For an extra credit opportunity I'm "borrowing" this idea I found on another math teacher's blog.  (You can look at her post to see her students' samples.)  She actually took the idea from this story on NPR and from, a website where Six Word Memoirs can be shared.

Using only 6 words, create a memoir of your year in our PAP Pre-Calculus Class.  Your sentence/phrase should make sense, but it does not necessarily need to be a complete sentence.  (I'll accept sentence fragments!  Don't tell your English teacher!)

  • Complete your memoir on a page at least 8.5" x 11".
  • Include your sentence, and then somehow illustrate your memoir.
  • You may type or hand-draw your "project."
  • Please be neat, colorful, and creative.
  • Your project should fill the page.
  • Have fun!
Your math memoir will be due on Monday, May 20, and it will be worth test points.

If you would like (need) additional points, either on your HW average or to boost your HW/Quiz category, you may create an additional Six Word Memoir about your "non-math" life.  

Feel free to post your sentence here, but please turn in your projects by next Monday.

Thanks, and I look forward to reading all of your memoirs!

By the way, here is my memoir, created while I was proctoring an AP test. :)   I think this sentence captures my math and IS jobs.  I'm still working on my illustrations, and I'm still working on my personal memoir.

I love to help find solutions.

Here are a few finished products from last year!  I think these memoirs are awesome!

Math: Where Conquering Concepts Happens Everyday

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Math-Magic with Pascal and Fibonacci

The purpose of the "web" assignment is to give you time to simply browse.  I hope you enjoy exploring different sites to see examples of some true mathmagic!

Click here for a link to the document for today's assignment.

And here's a new web tool I've wanted to try.  It's called "Thinglink," and you can embed links within the image.  Don't know if you'll get to explore Sierpenski triangles and fractals today, but they're very cool and related to Pascal's triangle, too!  I've attached a few links, and if you find something else fun, please try adding new links to this image.

Please share!
By Tuesday, April 9, 5 PM, please post (in the comments below) a sentence or two about the most math-magical thing you discovered about Pascal’s triangle, the Fibonacci sequence, or Phi.  What was fun, interesting, cool, or made you ooh and aah??  Please share!

Thank you, and have fun!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Let's Hear Your Voice!

Thanks again for your willingness to try a new technology tool!

You must first register with Voice Thread.

Once you register, you may search for our slides, or simply click the links below.  Feel free to look at both slide shows, and I will grade your comments left on either presentation.  (Sorry about any blurry pictures!)

1st period's work:

3rd period's work:

If you can think of any ways other ways students/teachers might enjoy using Voice Thread, please leave your comments on the slideshow or post a comment below.

Thank you!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

A Math Super Power!

Several years ago, Steve Strogatz, an award winning mathematician from Cornell, wrote a series of 15 articles in the New York Times Opinionator blog. He is a professor who really understands math-magic, and he wanted to explain it from the beginning of numbers to advanced calculus.  The entire series may be found here, and if you're looking for good math reads, check out all of the articles, in order.  I promise, the articles are engaging and entertaining, and in fact, in his first post, he uses a clip from Sesame Street to explain the importance of numbers. How brilliant is that?!?

In math, we don’t often have opportunities for reading and writing, so when the series was first published, I kept looking for ways to incorporate it into my now you'll get to respond on this blog! :-)

In your next opportunity to post for points, please read his article called "Power Tools," (which I also gave you before the break) and summarize the material using a 20 word gist.  Write a complete sentence (or I’ll even take a coherent phrase) using only 20 words.  You may summarize the entire article, one particular piece of the article, or you may draw a conclusion about the article, but you must do so using only twenty words.  More importantly, your sentence/phrase must make sense!  

Please don't forget to include either your first name or initials so that you can receive your extra credit points!

Once again...your sentence must make sense, relate to the article, and use EXACTLY 20 words.

Please post your comments by 5 PM on Friday, March 22.  
Have fun, and thanks for playing!
As always, I look forward to reading your responses.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

You're Intelligent in How Many Ways???

Happy New Year!  Welcome to 2013!!  Ready for a new semester?

How was your break?  Ready to jump into school, learning, and your intelligence?  (Of course you are!)

Have you ever heard of Howard Gardner's theory of Multiple Intelligences?  Instead of just IQ, Dr. Gardner suggested people have a variety of "types" of intelligence.  He orginally proposed 7 intelligences, then 8, and now some say 9, but here are two video options for you to learn about the different intelligences.

Both videos were created by teachers.  The first video is straight forward, and includes words, definitions, and pictures. The second video is a made-up song and animation, originally created for young children, but it  is cute (like School House Rock cute) in an elementary school way ... choose which one seems better for you!

I know you're anxious to determine your type of intelligence, and here's your opportunity!  Please take one of the surveys online found either here, here (click "Take the Test") or here.  (If another teacher gives you a paper version of an MI survey, feel free to use that quiz, rather than an online version.)  All three are different formats and offer different type of feedback, but my scores were the same.  Did you have one dominant intelligence, or were there several top intelligences?  You may find definitions and more information about intelligences at the websites here, here, here, or here.  There are so many resources, but I tried to pick ones that weren't too teacher-y.

Next, please submit your findings and reflections in this Google form.  Please complete the surveys and the responses by next Wednesday, January 16, 10 PM.

Thank you, and as always, I look forward to reading your responses!
(Don't forget to hit "Submit" at the end of your survey!)

Did you enjoy learning about multiple intelligences?  If you found any other interesting information, videos, or links, please post in the comments below!