Teacher Resources - Level 5 Resources
Record Makers and Breakers: Using Algebra to Analyze Change
This site shows students a graph of water depth and time in a bathtub and asks them to explain the events between each set of points. This allows the students to practice interpreting the slopes of graphs.
This site provides an example of a graph of a linear piece-wise function, which describes the speed of two students walking to school. Based on the slope of the graph at various points, students are asked to answer questions about each student’s walk to school.
This applet has students practice plotting points on the Cartesian coordinate plane. Each plane contains five to 30 mines and the robot must get from one corner to the other without hitting any mines. Students need to tell the robot the coordinate of his next step so that he follows a mine-free path.
Burns, M. (2000). About teaching mathematics: A K-8 resource, 2nd ed. Sausalito, CA: Math Solutions Publications.
Cuevas, G., & Yeatts, K. (2001). Navigating through algebra in grades 3-5. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
This book covers the main ideas of algebra including patterns, variables, equations and functions. These ideas are explored through various activities, some of which include analyzing various situations which have both constant and varying rates of change. The book also includes a CD-ROM with interactive activities for students.
Friel, S., Rachlin, S., & Doyle, D. (2001). Navigating through algebra in grades 6-8. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
This book focuses on using mathematical models to represent and analyze mathematical situations. Students use various representations, such as graphs and tables, and are asked to explore the relationship between these types of representations. The activities include ones focused on analyzing change and exploring linear relationships.
Lappan, G., Fey, J., Fitzgerald, W., Friel, S., & Phillips, E. (2002). Moving straight ahead: Linear relationships. Glenview, IL: Prentice Hall.
This unit explores linear relationships in both graphical and tabular form. Lessons in the unit include interpreting linear relationships, finding the point of intersection, interpreting slope and finding intercepts of a line.
Van Dyke, F. (1998). A visual approach to algebra. White Plains, NY: Dale Seymour Publications.
This unit includes lessons on interpreting linear graphs, such as the meaning of the slope of a line. There are multiple exercises within each topic, including experiments for the classroom, which allow students to practice their skills.
Beckmann, C., & Rozanski, K. (1999). Graphs in real time. Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 5, 92-99.
Three different activities are provided for teachers that incorporate the use of graphing calculators and motion detectors. Students participate in their own experiments and gather their data by walking away from and towards motion detectors. They can then use their data to discover the meaning of the slope in their graph and explore ideas behind the rate of change.
Enright, B. (1998). Picky patterns. Teaching Children Mathematics, 5, 174-178.
This article presents an activity for students in which they must create multiple shapes from toothpicks. The students are asked to record their data as they participate and then graph it onto a coordinate plane. The students can then use this graph to analyze the situation and find patterns.
Johnson, M. (1997). Exploring graphs: WYSIWYG. Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 2, 328-331.
This article presents several real-life applications to graph. The author presents five different figures, which either contain data or graphs about specific situations. For each figure, there are questions that have students interpret the data given. Students can also use this data to create and analyze their own graphs.
Moore, D. (1999). Some like it hot: Promoting measurement and graphical thinking by using temperature. Teaching Children Mathematics, 5, 538-543.
Students are asked to participate in a variety of temperature experiments in which they must record their own data. Students can then use this data to explore the rate of change in different environments around them.