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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

Rebholz, Joachim A. – Mathematics Teacher, 2017

Graphing functions is an important topic in algebra and precalculus high school courses. The functions that are usually discussed include polynomials, rational, exponential, and trigonometric functions along with their inverses. These functions can be used to teach different aspects of function theory: domain, range, monotonicity, inverse…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, High School Students, Secondary School Mathematics, Graphs

Nirode, Wayne – Mathematics Teacher, 2017

Since the 1970s, the Mathematical Association of America's (MAA) journals "Mathematics Magazine" and "College Mathematics Journal" have published "Proofs without Words" (PWWs) (Nelsen 1993). "PWWs are pictures or diagrams that help the reader see why a particular mathematical statement may be true and how one…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Logic, Validity, Secondary School Mathematics

Czocher, Jennifer A.; Moss, Diana L. – Mathematics Teacher, 2017

Why are math modeling problems the source of such frustration for students and teachers? The conceptual understanding that students have when engaging with a math modeling problem varies greatly. They need opportunities to make their own assumptions and design the mathematics to fit these assumptions (CCSSI 2010). Making these assumptions is part…

Descriptors: Mathematical Models, Problem Solving, Mathematics Instruction, High School Students

Richardson, Janessa; Bachman, Rachel M. – Mathematics Teacher, 2017

This article describes a preservice teacher's imaginative exploration of completing the square through a process of reasoning and sense making. She recounts historical perspectives and her own discoveries in the process of completing the square. Through this process of sense making, she engaged with the content standard of completing the square to…

Descriptors: Preservice Teachers, Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Concepts, Mathematical Logic

Viro, Julia – Mathematics Teacher, 2014

Constructing viable arguments and reasoning abstractly is an essential part of the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSSI 2010). This article discusses the scenarios in which a mathematical task is impossible to accomplish, as well as how to approach impossible scenarios in the classroom. The concept of proof is introduced as the…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Concepts, Validity, Mathematical Logic

Muller, Kimberly O. – Mathematics Teacher, 2010

While serving in the U.S. Congress, Abraham Lincoln, a self-taught learner, mastered Euclid's Elements (Basler 1953). Most students today do not study mathematics for recreation. Unlike Lincoln, they need a little help in learning how to write a geometry proof. Today's technology--specifically, The Geometer's Sketchpad[R] (GSP)--can help make…

Descriptors: Secondary School Mathematics, Preservice Teachers, Mathematics Education, Geometry