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Edwards, Thomas G.; Chelst, Kenneth R. – Mathematics Teacher, 2019

While tutoring his granddaughter in second-year algebra recently, the second author lamented that every textbook he could find expresses the quadratic formula as probably the most common form of the formula. What troubled him is that this form hides the meaning of the various components of the equation. Indeed, the meaning was obscured by the…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Formulas, Algebra, Teaching Methods

Weber, Christof – Mathematics Teacher, 2019

Students' difficulties understanding the meaning of logarithms could stem in part from differences between teachers' and students' views of them. The purpose of this article is to unpack some specialized content knowledge for teaching logarithms. The author discusses the history of logarithms to show why they can be understood as repeated…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Teaching Methods, Difficulty Level, Numbers

Purvinis, Elaine M.; Fagan, Joshua B. – Mathematics Teacher, 2019

In first- and second-year algebra classrooms, the all-too-familiar whine of "when are we ever going to use this in real life?" challenges mathematics teachers to find new, engaging ways to present mathematical concepts. The introduction of quadratic equations is typically modeled by describing the motion of a moving object with respect…

Descriptors: Algebra, Mathematical Concepts, Equations (Mathematics), Mathematics Instruction

Henderson, Christie – Mathematics Teacher, 2019

Embedding mathematics in a relatable context has changed the way Christie Henderson's elementary students view the subject. In this article, Henderson discusses how presenting mathematics through a relatable context enables students to visualize the math and make a pictorial representation to aid them in solving it. When relevant and relatable…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Elementary School Students, Elementary School Mathematics, Mathematics Teachers

Mooney, Eileen B. – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

Top-down implementation of technology is one of the most pervasive phenomena of the last couple of decades in educational history. It is the subject of many books, articles, and blog posts on how to fix schools or why educational technology is not working in the classroom. The idea of providing teachers with technology so they can make students…

Descriptors: Educational Technology, Technology Uses in Education, Teaching Methods, Mathematics Instruction

Teuscher, Dawn; Palsky, Kylie; Palfreyman, Charlie Y. – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

The goal of this article is to raise questions that will promote discussions among secondary mathematics teachers about the concept of inverse functions and how to motivate a more conceptual understanding of them in their classrooms. The authors share data to answer the following questions: (1) What meanings of inverse functions do high school…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Secondary School Mathematics, Mathematical Concepts, Teaching Methods

Nabb, Keith; Hofacker, Erick B.; Ernie, Kathryn T.; Ahrendt, Susan – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

This article highlights three of the eight Mathematics Teaching Practices (MTP) published in the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics' (NCTM's) "Principles to Actions: Ensuring Mathematical Success for All" (2014): (1) facilitating meaningful mathematical discourse (MTP 4); (2) posing purposeful questions (MTP 5); and (3)…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Teaching Methods, Active Learning, Calculus

Lischka, Alyson E.; Gerstenschlager, Natasha E.; Stephens, D. Christopher; Strayer, Jeremy F.; Barlow, Angela T. – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

Mistakes can be a source of frustration for teachers and students in mathematics classrooms because they reveal potential misunderstandings or a lack of learning. However, increasing evidence shows that making mistakes creates productive pathways for learning new ideas and building new concepts (Boaler 2016; Borasi 1996). Learning through…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Error Patterns, Teaching Methods, Homework

Clinch, Adam – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

One of the foundational topics in first-year algebra concerns the concept of factoring. This article discusses an alternative strategy for factoring quadratics of the form ax[superscript 2] + bx + c, known as "factoring for roots." This strategy enables students to extend the knowledge they used when the leading coefficient was 1 and…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Algebra, Teaching Methods, Problem Solving

Davis, Anna A.; Joswick, Candace – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

The correct use of visual perspective is one of the main reasons that virtual reality environments and realistic works of art look lifelike. Geometric construction techniques used by artists to achieve an accurate perspective effect were developed during the Renaissance. With the rise of computer graphics, translating the geometric ideas of 600…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Computer Graphics, Computer Simulation, Teaching Methods

Pope, Derek – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

The author shares the lesson that he used to introduce the quadratic unit to students in an extended second-year algebra class, demonstrate why it was appropriate for his struggling learners, and discuss possible future modifications to this lesson.

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Algebra, Mathematical Concepts, Secondary School Mathematics

Ichinose, Cherie Lynn; Martinez-Cruz, Armando M. – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

The Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSSM) (CCSSI 2010) propose a new vision for the mathematics classroom with updated content standards and Standards for Mathematical Practice (SMP). These practices are founded on NCTM processes (Problem Solving, Reasoning and Proof, Communication, Representation, and Connections) and abilities…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Teaching Methods, Problem Solving, Common Core State Standards

Nirode, Wayne – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

Twenty years ago when the author was student teaching, he quickly learned what geometry teachers and researchers (e.g., Senk 1985) have long known: High school geometry students struggle with proof. Throughout his career, he has tried to create instructional materials to make proof more accessible to his students. From field-testing materials with…

Descriptors: Secondary School Mathematics, High Schools, Geometry, Mathematics Instruction

Ghosh, Jonaki B. – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

The Tower of Hanoi is an old, popular, and engaging puzzle. It is an exceptional puzzle too considering how effective it can be in engendering multiple valuable outcomes when used as a tool for learning. One of the fundamental goals of mathematics teacher preparation is to enable the prospective teacher to develop mathematical habits of mind and…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Teaching Methods, Puzzles, Preservice Teachers

Bixby, Matt M. – Mathematics Teacher, 2018

Almost twenty years ago, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) published "Principles and Standards for School Mathematics" (2000), which recommended that teachers should incorporate more writing into their math lessons, claiming that writing helps students "consolidate their thinking" (p. 402) by causing them…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Writing Assignments, Teaching Methods, Content Area Writing