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Middle School Math News: April 2012

Geometry is the main topic in Middle School Math this month.  Course 1, Course 2, and Course 3 will all be focusing on geometry in April.  Of course each of them will have a slightly different focus:  In Course 1 the basics of Area and Volume will be discussed.  Course 2 will spend more time identifying and classifying various objects and shapes, and the move into 2-D and 3-D geometry.  Finally, in Course 3 we’ll focus on transformations, volume and surface area.

Now that we know how to add, subtract, and multiply polynomials in Algebra, this month we will be learning how to factor, you remember, “unFOIL.”  It’s sure to be great fun!  Before the end of the month we will be moving on to Quadratic Equations!  It’s an exciting time in middle school math these days 🙂


Middle School Math News: March 2012

Dear Community:  In Course 2, we are doing a project that requires quite a bit of nice pieces of cardboard.  I have been receiving some nice pieces, what I am still missing are 1 or 2 LARGE pieces.  If you have any nice, large (4 foot +) pieces, please drop them by my room in the A-wing.  Thanks.

All of the middle school math classes will be taking the Terra Nova test in the near future.  Course 2, will be taking it on  March 7th and Course 3 and Algebra will be taking it on March 8th.  Course 1 has a unit test on the 7th so they will be scheduled to take the Terra Nova on March 12.  Please support your student by making sure they get a good nights sleep, breakfast, and encouragement to be relaxed, and to do their best.

In Algebra, we have a couple of things going on at the same time.  We will be working on a project called Consumer Report using systems of linear equations.  We have also begun a unit covering polynomials… their first real introduction to x²y⁵z – 4z², and the like.

In Course 3 we are working on a short unit covering percents – real life math most of us use everyday.  Next we will look into statistics.

In Course 2, as I mentioned earlier, we are working on a project that requires cardboard.  It’s a surprise for curriculum celebration, but I will tell you it is an application of scale models.

In Course 1, we are working with integers – understanding them, and using them in the four basic operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division).  Next, we will look into data and statistics.

MS Math update for January, 2012

We return to school with most of the projects completed and ready for Curriculum Celebration on Friday, January 13! Good work, kids. A new semester begins this month with an even more productive pace anticipated.

In Course 1 we will continue our work with fractions, this time reviewing, learning, and mastering the four operations (adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing) with fractions and mixed numbers.

Course 2 will be getting an introduction into functions, as well as exploring patterns as they relate to functions.

In Course 3 we are trying out a new project… and math video. The kids will be asked to choose a problem and film a creative video of it’s solution. Which reminds me… I may be asking for a volunteer judge or two.

In Algebra we are really getting deep into linear functions; learning all the “forms,” you remember Ax + By = C; y = mx + b; y – y₁ = m(x – x₁); etc.

Isn’t math great!?

MS Math update for December, 2011

I just love this time of year… Algebra is kicking into full gear and they have become such motivated, independent learners. Not that I don’t hear the moans about homework, but I can tell they love the challenge. We are currently finishing work on solving and graphing inequalities and compound inequalities. Next, we will explore Functions.

Course 3 is finishing up a project with scale factors where they chose an object or living being to dilate; either enlarging it or reducing it. Next, we will be working with graphing, interpreting graphs and tables, and taking a look at sequences, especially arithmetic sequences.

In Course 2 we are completing a unit covering rational numbers… you know decimals and fractions (but not positive and negative numbers yet). We have covered all four operations involving decimals and fractions.

Course 1 is laying the foundation for working with fractions, understanding divisibility rules, prime factors, and greatest common factors, so that we can move into understanding fractions and eventually operations with fractions.

Math Update for November, 2011

Having made our way through MEAPs we are back into full swing in math classes these days.

In Course 1 we took our first test over place value, order of operations, and an introduction to patterns. Since, we’ve been working on decimals, and decimal operations.

Course 2 completed a review of exponents, order of operations, mathematical properties, prime factorization, GCF, and LCM. Soon we will be completing a unit covering integers, integer operations, equivalent fractions, mixed numbers and decimals. This will lead us into reviewing and expanding fraction operations.

After a nice review of integers and other rational numbers, and simple equations and inequalities Course 3 has come upon the middle school milestone skill: proportions. We will be challenging ourselves with a dilation project.

The students in the Algebra class have really been proving themselves this year. They began with the Local Expert project which they all became an expert in one middle school math skill and help their peers review that skill. We have completed the first unit in class and are moving onto loads of fun with solving equations!

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