Monthly Archives: February 2015

It’s Logs, Logs, Logs!

Oh, the joy of teaching logs. And by weird unit planning, I’m teaching them in both Algebra II and Precal at the same time, which makes me want to give up in Algebra II because they act like it’s the first time they’ve seen them in Precal.  Oh, wait, I forgot, all my students have math amnesia this year.  Me on a Wednesday: “This may be like what we did on Monday.” Student: “Oh, that’s too far back to remember.”


Oh, yeah, that’s right. I’ll go ahead and share my stuff with y’all not because it’s super awesome or mindblowing or anything, but because log stuff is hard to find out there. I basically stole some good stuff from Mimi’s “secret” method of teaching logs and turned it into a note-taker-maker (because I must turn everything into an NTM):

log intro alg iiFile here  Chocolate Covered Raindrops font here.

It went GREAT.  I didn’t even mention the “woosh” or the circle even though I love the woosh and taught it to precal. (I can’t explain why except maybe I didn’t look at Mimi’s post before the precal lesson? Or maybe sometimes I fall back into easy answers instead of deep understanding because I’m running out of time and I can’t handle another day of blank stares at papers?).  All the students were exclaiming how “easy” (!!) it was without the woosh and they didn’t even get tripped up by #15.

But now it’s time for…..




Here’s what I did in Precal last week:

log propertiesI really liked having the numerical examples as “back up” proofs. They’re kind of magical.  And here’s what I did last year in Alg II:

log properties Alg IIAnd I’m also intrigued by Kate’s plans. And we have no school tomorrow and I need two more tests before the end of next week so I can’t spend too much time on it, but I’d like to do better.  I was trying to figure out how to tie in asking the question of “what power of b gives you x?” but couldn’t make it work. I’m open to any and all suggestions.

In other news, the day after log properties I gave my Precal kiddos a worksheet on solving equations with multiple logs on both sides from this workbook:

Which I need to use more often because they really put some thought into the problems. They do a good job of putting in problems where kids would make foolish mistakes and of putting them in a nice order. I just saw they have a second version that I may need to get.  Anyway, my kids did great with just a little help along the way.  Then yesterday we did this:

log equationsFile here

And things were still going ok.  Late start today meant only 30 minutes to work on these mixed problems in groups:

log equation practiceFile here

My favorite mistake was on #5, just drop all the natural logs to get x – 2 – x – 3 = x – 1 – x + 7.  Even though they did it perfectly on Friday’s worksheet.

Have I mentioned the math amnesia epidemic?!?!?

But I can’t solve that epidemic right now, so I’m going to go watch some Better Off Ted and enjoy my maybe snowless 🙁  snow day 🙂 tomorrow.

And for those of us that grew up with Ren and Stimpy, you’re welcome:

Category: Uncategorized

Graph(s) Paper

So the Kickstarter for CoordiMate was discussed in the MTBoS recently.  It’s a self-inking stamp of a coordinate grid aaaaand I kind of want one.  Because I am the laziest/non-scaliest grapher in the world. “No, trust me kids, this would look like a line if I had the ability to space my tick marks.”

But until then, at least I have really pretty graphs I can print out and/or cut and paste into worksheets, tests, etc.  And now you can too!  Let’s check out the rewards for my own personal mathstarter campaign:

Pledge at least $0

Get a full page of -8 to 8 graphs that you or students can print out for homework and practice.

page of graphs  Claim your reward here in doc or pdf!

Pledge at least $00

Get a whole page of -10 to 10/ -11 to 11 blank dotted graphs. My preferred graph for conics.

blank dotted graphsClaim your reward here in doc or pdf!

Pledge at least $000

You want trig graphs?  Do ya, punk?  Ok then, here’s a page of blank trig graphs from -2pi to 4pi.

blank trig graphsCurrently available as PDF only.

Pledge at least $000000

For the ultra backers at this level, we have the ultimate rewards package.  This collection of ten different graphs comes as a one-page download so you can quickly copy and paste single graphs into your document.  All of them are made of grouped drawing objects which means you can modify the size but keep the proportions by dragging the corner handle while holding done the ctrl key (but if you’re an ultrabacker, I’m sure you already knew that trick).

variety graphsClaim your reward here as a doc file!

So there’s my mathstarter project. I think it’s next Exploding Kittens, don’t you?