The post Basic Math At Home appeared first on X•Y Charts.
]]>Your attitude as a parent can make a big difference in your child’s success in school. During my years of teaching algebra, I often met students who were proud to admit that they couldn’t do math or didn’t like math. They would say that they picked this up at home. The activities suggested here are not difficult and can be fun for both parent and child. What a difference this can make in your child’s future math classes!
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]]>The post Drill and kill? Drill and skill! Drill and thrill! appeared first on X•Y Charts.
]]>How can you divide if you can’t multiply? How factor? How find common denominators or common factors? Algebra is very painful for those students who don’t know the facts. They are doomed to rely on technology.
So for “drill and kill” I propose:
And besides, the difficulty of the task is overrated. Check this out.
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This figure called a parabola tells all. Other alternatives such as a list of resulting (x,y) number pairs
(3,9), (4,16), (-2,4), (5,25), (-10,100), (6,36) or the popular xy table:
X | Y |
-5 | 25 |
10 | 100 |
-3 | 9 |
11 | 121 |
-6 | 36 |
0 | 0 |
1 | 1 |
-4 | 16 |
7 | 49 |
4 | 16 |
15 | 225 |
We can later explore how to use the graph, but for now recognize that if a range of x values starting with negative numbers and proceeding to positive numbers is multiplied by itself, those pairs of x’s and y’s when plotted as points will produce a figure that goes down and back up in symmetrical fashion. That’s easier to see with the graph.
Here is a great online graphing calculator if you’d like to experiment. Enter y = x^2 in the input field to see this parabola.
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]]>The post Piet Mondrian: the artistic inspiration. appeared first on X•Y Charts.
]]>Piet Mondrian loved simple geometry and basic colors. These colors coupled with the connect-the-dot drawings supply entertainment that our intelligent math students appreciate. All of our multiplication learners are naturally intelligent in math.
Here is a link to a Mondrian-like art generator that you may enjoy. The images change every six seconds, but if your attention span is shorter, click the screen. MondrianArt
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]]>The post René Descartes: Our Hero appeared first on X•Y Charts.
]]>His coordinate system, originating around 1629, changed the way we learn and visualize math. He is usually remembered as a philosopher, considered to be the first “modern” thinker: “Cogito ergo sum”. It is in mathematics, however, where his genius shines. The X•Y Chart is dedicated to René for two of his mathematical contributions. First of all, he brought together the worlds of geometry and algebra in his coordinate system. Four hundred years later the first quadrant of this system became the visual home for the multiplication facts presented in the X•Y Chart. When children complete a connect-the-dots picture using only a list of ordered pairs to guide them, they see, often for the first time, that numbers can turn into pictures. That is a powerful insight. Children in our culture do not normally associate numbers with pictures. They associate numbers with bad math teachers! As they find the locations for those dots, they are also finding the products for those two coordinates. Secondly, the X and Y in the name of our chart aligns with René’s use of the final letters of the alphabet to designate algebraic variables and to identify the horizontal and vertical axes of the coordinate system. The more our children see the X and the Y in the chart, the less likely they will fear those letters when they meet them in algebra class. Thank you, René.
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