A Few Changes

I have taught Honors Precalculus for years…though I try to switch some things up, mostly to keep things fresh for me. This semester I thought that the first chapter needed a couple changes, since the things at the end tended to be the things students missed (if anything) on the test. Rather than doing the Piecewise Functions graph right after the Parent Functions (as the book does) I thought to teach Operations on Functions with Domain and then go back to graphing after. It gives the students some extra time to work with composition of functions, and it also spreads graphing out, leaving time for students to process that. I think it was a good choice. Students did well on their test, even on the composition questions, something that in the past they may have gotten wrong because not enough days were spent thinking about the topic and how to work with the domain. Here are some pictures from my Interactive Notebook on these topics.

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I also changed some of the notes from past years…with more emphasis on composition of functions.

Function Chapter – Honors Precalculus

I made a few changes to my first honors precalculus chapter this semester. Having gone through a whole course with my INB once, I decided I had a lot more room and didn’t need to cram a lot of information on one page. The unit starts out discussing functions and all that is related, domain, range, notation… I got the vocabulary sheet from Math=Love blog, just retyped it myself to have 2 per page rather than 6.

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The inside of this notesheet is modified a bit from last term…I think students made the transition from inequality notation to interval notation a lot easier by starting with that, then discussing domain and range from the graphs. I’m trying to emphasize the importance of color a lot more this term, and students seem to be taking to that better than last semester as well. Some were even using color on the short answer portion of their test at the end of the chapter.

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This even/odd functions page is new…Students weren’t sure about taking notes without a notesheet in their INBs, but mine were planned out enough that I could tell them to divide up the page into three sections to be sure they had enough room.

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So is the brochure-like page about Analyzing Functions. I wanted it to make more sense to me, hopefully then making sense to the students a little better. The Left Hand Side activities and problems are also causing me to assign less homework problems, because there is time set aside in class to do some practice that most students seem to get done because they know they will get immediate feedback on it.

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My last INB did not have a Difference Quotient/Rate of Change page…I changed that here.

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DQs are still a work-in-progress. I have to remember to keep assigning one of these here and there. Next, graphing topics and operations on functions.

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I think my students appreciated the little graph squares on the piecewise functions pages. It made it easier to budget space as well as to keep the graphs neat. I think as far as the composition of functions go, I need to put more emphasis on determining functions that were composed together (breaking down the composition) because that is how they will be used the most in Calculus. This unit, I did a few group activities too. One is a translations assignment: Translations_and_the_Coordinate_a_b_GW1. The others are saved at school, and I will try to remember to post them later!

180 – Day 10

We made it to double-digits! Honors Precalculus was once again on the graphing kick…working more with piecewise functions, which we started on Friday. I used notes I found on Sam Shah’s site, and they worked great! Today we reviewed a bit of piecewise, and applied the transformations with (a, b). When you put everything in one problem…it really gets the student’s brain churning!

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We then moved onto Operations on Functions, the last topic for this function chapter. I made a foldable to use for their notes. We got part-way through it in my block today. This too is review, but I’m really stressing the domains with students because there is less of an emphasis on that in Honors Advanced Algebra.

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