Friday, December 8, 2017

Week of December 8

December 8, 2017

Sam’s 4-6th Math Class

Etienne and Ishan work on Sierpinski Carpet fractal.
Counting boxes to make the fractals.
This week we continued to look at fractals. The class spent a significant amount of time working on a fifth iteration Sierpinski Carpet, which is now on display in the MS across from the elevator. It was a technically challenging experience for many of the students that required following an iterative process with a high degree of attention to details. If even one square was miscounted the whole image looked wrong. (If you get a chance to see the finished product, you can see a few places where someone had to correct an error.
Algebra and Pre-Algebra

Nick and Niko explore the relation between batteries (voltage),
 resistance (lightbulbs) and current (brightness of bulbs)
Math this week largely was combined with science activities. As we are working with the Arduinos, we’ve begun to learn some of the basic concepts surrounding electricity and currents. Tuesday’s batteries and lightbulbs investigations emphasized proportional reasoning and we formalized that connection with the introduction of Ohm’s Law on Wednesday.

The d=rt and V=IR graphic organizer pyramids visualize
the proportional relationship of those quantities.
In more formal math classes, the Completing Algebra group has been working on graphing parabolas; especially investigating establishing a relationship between changes in the coefficients of the terms and the appearance of the graph. The Beginning Algebra group continued to work with linear equations and the Pre-Algebra group is going into more depth on single variable equations and inequalities.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Week of December 1

December 1, 2017

Sam’s 4-6th Math Class

This week we dug into concepts related to ratios and fractals. We watched the thought provoking Nova episode: Fractals the Hidden Dimension and then talked about what it means to be “self-similar” and how an object can have a finite area but an infinite perimeter.
It was also very interesting that in their Morning Meeting presentation about Wildlife in Michigan, they mentioned the length of the coastline, which led us to another discussion about fractals and measurement related to “How Long is the Coastline of Britain.”
Algebra and Pre-Algebra

The 7th and 8th graders have mostly been completing assessments this week. All of the groups also had some new material introduced. The pre-algebra group started a unit on factors, fractions and exponents; the beginning algebra group is learning how to write the equations of lines from points or graphs and the completing Algebra group has started working with square roots and quadratic equations.