Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Student Blogging

I am about ready to have students become more involved in my blog. I will be sending home information soon for students and parents that will give more details. If you are interested in seeing what I am planning, I have posted a draft of my handouts on my other blog.

Proportions and Scale Drawings

I have graded 3 out of 5 classes' tests, and I hope to finish the rest tonight.

In math class we looked at scale drawings today and learned how to find actual measurements using the scale given on a map or blueprint. Parents, if you have any type of scale drawings at home, share them with your child and explain how you use them in "real life." Math homework tonight is pp. 307-308, #10-16 even, 17-19, 22-25, 28, 32-38 even.

In Pre-Algebra we converted among fractions, decimals, and percents. This should be review from elementary school, but there were a few challenging problems thrown in that I thought the students should look at this year. If you need help with this, click on the link to Ellie's math blog in the sidebar, and there are some good sites on this topic. Tonight's pre-algebra homework is pp. 284-285, #16-48 even, 54, 58-70.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Monday Makeup Test

Everyone took the second probability test today. I am planning to grade papers tonight, so maybe I'll have the grades tomorrow! (One can always hope!) I also took up all work since the last test. I did not make a new assignment today, but an assignment from last week is due tomorrow. I also offered extra credit. This will be due the next time I take up work.

MATH: pp. 299-300, #16-38 even, 40-43, 45, 48-52
Extra Credit: p. 572, Lesson 4-1, #1-30

Pre-Algebra: pp.279-280, #8-20 even, 24, 26-36
Extra Credit: p. 729, Lesson 3-5, #1-21

Math Team Announcement: We will not have practice Tuesday morning because of a conflict with National Junior Honor Society. We will still have the Tuesday afternoon practice, and we will practice Thursday morning. I need to know by Tuesday who is able to go to the Grissom tournament on February 25.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Friday Fun

Author Ruth White spoke to the 7th grade during 3rd period today, so that class did not meet. There will be a test Monday over compound probability. We will have a short review before the test. The following homework is due Tuesday:

Math: pp. 299-300, #16-38 even, 40-43, 45, 48-52
Pre-Algebra: pp. 279-280, #8-20 even, 24, 26-36

MATH TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT!!! I need to know who is able to attend the Grissom tournament on Februay 25. Let me know on Monday.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Probability Test Retake Rescheduled

We had a class meeting today, and that put me a little off schedule. Now every class is in a different place again! Congratulations to Katie G. for being chosen Student of the Month for Most School Spirit! Go West Hall!

I gave back the probability test today. We went over it in class, but I kept the papers to file them. If you would like to know your child's grade, please email me.

There were lots of wonderful grades, but there were also many grades that could have been better. We worked on probability in Reading and Review today, and I will review with them tomorrow. I decided to postpone the retake until Monday because they are taking tests in Science and Social Studies tomorrow. You can find the review I posted earlier here.

Here is tonight's homework:

1st Period: p. 149, #9-20
2nd Period: pp. 299-300, #16-38 even, 40-43, 45, 48-52
3rd Period: pp. 279-280, #8-20 even, 24, 26-36 (This is due Tuesday.)
4th Period: None (I will be assigning 3rd's work for you tomorrow.)
5th Period: None (I will be assigning 2nd's work for you tomorrow.)

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Wednesday - PreAlgebra Lesson

I forgot to post this before leaving school. Sorry it's so late! We learned how to solve proportions today. You can multiply the cross-products to give an equation that can be solved to find the missing number. There are some good examples in the book. Your homework was on pages 273-274, 10-30 even, 39-41, 46-55. 4th Period also needs to complete the ARMT practice worksheet.

Wednesday - Math Lesson

Today in math we studied rates. We learned that a rate compares two quantities that have different measurements. We also learned how to find unit rates by dividing the numerator and denominator by the denominator. Parents can help students understand the concept of unit rate by taking them grocery shopping and talking about the prices and determining which size of a product is the better buy. I told students to look at the shelf labels to find the unit rate.

Tonight's math homework is pp. 294-295, #10-18 even, 20-23, 28, 28, 30-35, 38, 40
You may use a calculator!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Update on Probability Test

I just wanted to let the parents know that I haven't finished grading last week's test. Many of you know that my husband is on active duty with the Army. He came home this weekend for the first time in a month, so I have been trying to spend time with him and our children. I also spent Saturday at a math tournament, so that put me behind as well. I plan to have them all graded by Thursday. We will go over them in class on Thursday and then have our final probability test on Fiday.

New Chapter - Ratios and Proportions

We began a new chapter today on Ratios and Proportions. We defined a ratio to be a comparison of two numbers. Ratios often work like fractions. Remember to simplify all ratios. When you are simplifying a ratio that contains measurements, the units of measure must be the same. Here is the homework for tonight.

Math: pp. 290-291, #14-30 even, 40, 41
Pre-Algebra: pp. 267-268, #16-46 even, 56-60
ALL classes but 4th also had a worksheet on Probability that is due Wednesday.

Monday, January 23

Yesterday I was out of school to go to a funeral. The students were given workbook pages to do in class. Anyone who was absent or who did not finish needs to complete these.

Math: Practice Skills Workbook Lesson 9.7
Pre-Algebra: Practice Workbook Lesson 12.9

Friday, January 20, 2006

Compound Probability

Today we learned how to find the probability of compound events. A compound event occurs when more than one thing is happening.

Example: A number cube is rolled and a coin is tossed. What is the probability that you will roll an even number and get tails?

To work this problem, you would first find the probability of each event.
P(even number)= 3 out of 6 = 1/2
P(tails) = 1/2

Then you should multiply these probabilities to find the compound probability.
1/2 X 1/2 = 1/4

Sometimes the probability of the second event depends on the first event.

Example: There are 8 marbles in a jar. Four are orange, and three are black. What is the probability of drawing two orange marbles if the first marble is not replace?

P(first orange) = 4/8 = 1/2
P(second orange) = 3/7 (There is one less orange and one less total.)
You would still multiply the two probabilities.
P(orange, then orange) = 1/2 x 3/7 = 3/14

Tonight's homework....
Math: pp. 400-401, #6-9, 11-16, 19-21, 25-32
Pre-Algebra: pp. 653-655, #11-28, 33, 34, 50

Thursday, January 19, 2006

FYI...Important things every 7th grader should know!

I am finding some gaps in the knowledge of my students....

There are 26 letters in the alphabet.

Red and blue make purple.

A cat is a small furry animal with whiskers that says "meow."

Every animal is either male or female.

TV News is due every Friday!

There are ten digits in our number system: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9.

Can you think of anything else?

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Last night's homework...

Is posted under Mathematical Reflections. Send me an email if you can't find it.

ThinkLink Day

What a long day this has been! We spent two and a half hours in homeroom this morning taking the ThinkLink test. This will give us some great information about what the students have learned so far this year. We will be taking the results of this test and determining who needs extra help and what topics need extra attention before we take the ARMT in April

Every class met today, but several lasted only 20 minutes. I decided to postpone the Probability test until tomorrow. Nobody seemed to mind too much! :-)

There was no homework for tonight. I did give a worksheet of ARMT practice problems to a few classes, and I asked them to look at the problems and mark the ones they did not know how to do.

Math Team Announcement!!! Information about the tournament went home today. See you Saturday!

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Mathematical Reflections

Tonight's homework required some note-taking ability in class. In case you weren't able to do this successfully, here are the questions again!

In this investigation, you explored games of chance. Working on the problems gave you an opportunity to review ideas about experimental probability and theoretical probability. These questions will help you summarize what you have learned:

1. a. Write a brief description of experimental probability.
1. b. Describe a strategy you have used to find experimental probabilities.

2. a. Write a brief description of theoretical probability.
2. b. Describe strategies you have used to find theoretical probabilities.

3. What does it mean for two or more events to be equally likely? Give examples of events that are equally likely.

We will have a test Wednesday. You need to be able to do the following:

-Find the probability of a simple event. Example: There are 30 students in math class. 20 are girls and 10 are boys. What is the probability that a randomly selected student will be a boy? P(boy) = 10/30 = 1/3 (Reduce!)

-Draw a tree diagram.

- Use the Fundamental Counting Principle to find the number of possible outcomes.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Probability Review

We are having a test next week over probability of compound events, and I wanted to share with you some websites I found that will help you review what we have learned. Let me know which of these you found to be helpful!

Basic Probability Module This site takes you through a review of compound probability then lets you take a test. At the end of the test you are told which sections to review if you missed any question.

Lesson on Single and Compound Events Ignore the part about permutations and combinations. You will learn those terms later.

Practice Working with Single and Compound Events This page accompanies the previous link. There are practice problems for you to answer. I like the chance to click on an explanation of each problem before you answer it!

Explore Learning Gizmos This page lists each section in our textbook and a "gizmo" to go with each one. If you scroll down to Chapter 9, you will find "gizmos" to accompany probability. Try 9.1 and 9.3. You may have to download Shockwave, and for some reason my computer isn't cooperating. I haven't tried these, but they look interesting. You can use a 30-day free trial to play, and I think you can play anytime for 5 minutes. I would like to hear from anyone who was able to get this to work.

edHelper.com is another site that lets you try a little of their product for free. I found sample worksheets on the Fundamental Counting Principle, Compound Probability, and more Compound Probability. If you do any of these, print them out and bring them to me for extra credit!

Mrs. Glosser's Math Goodies has a lesson on Probability of Independent Events. This shows you how to do what we are learning Tuesday. At the bottom of the page there is a quiz.

There are online version of our textbooks(7th Math and Pre-Algebra) that have some excellent resources. I gave students the username and password to access the actual textbook earlier in the year. If you need those again, email me. (I think I shouldn't post them to the web.) However, you can access the following pages without the password: Parent and Student Study Guide, Extra Examples (Click on the chapter you want and then click on the section. The test will cover sections 9.1-9.3), and a Chapter Test (remember - we haven't covered all of chapter 9). The sidebar to these pages will also take you to some other areas. All of these links are from the 7th grade math book. There are similar activities in the Pre-Algebra site. Compound probability is on the ARMT, and the Pre-Algebra students did not study this last year.

Have fun with these! If you run across any other sites that would be helpful, email them to me and I will add them to the list.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Math Doodles

I have posted a link in the sidebar and here to a website that has several games that reinforce basic math skills. I really enjoyed playing Connect Sums, Sums Stacker, and Number Jump, but I couldn't figure out how to play Polyomino Shift, Double Traits, and Hydro Maze. Can anyone figure them out and explain them to me?

Wasn't today a lovely day!

The weather was dreary, but today was a great day at the Ridge!

There were lots of questions about last night's homework, so we spent all of class today going over the work. Anyone who didn't complete their work because they didn't understand can show me their completed work on Tuesday to get a stamp.

2nd Period class did not meet because we went to an assembly celebrating the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It was an excellent assembly!

I offered some extra credit just in case there were some eager students who felt they needed to practice probability over the long weekend. (I don't think I mentioned this to 1st or 2nd period).

Math: p. 585, Lessons 9-2 and 9-3
Pre-Algebra: p. 754, Lesson 12-6

Attention Math Team!!! Our next tournament is Saturday, January 21. I will send home details next week. I will also be calling or emailing the parents who offered to drive.

The next test will be Wednesday or Thursday. Have a great long weekend!

Probability...It's FUNdamental! (Thurs., Jan. 12)

Sorry about not posting yesterday! I tried to do it quickly between classes, but I forgot to save my post before I logged off the Internet! I didn't have time later.

Yesterday we discovered the Fundamental Counting Principal. The definition is in the textbook, but here is my version in plain English.

To determine the number of possible outcomes in a compound event (more than one action is taking place), multiply the number of possible outcomes for each action.

For example, Andy has 5 shirts, 3 pairs of pants, and 6 pairs of socks. How many different outfits can Andy choose with a shirt, pair of pants, and pair of socks?

5 x 3 x 6 = 90 different outfits

Sometimes you have to read the problem very carefully to work it correctly!

Homework from Thursday:
Math (1st, 2nd 5th): p. 376, # 15-17 and p. 380, # 9-15, 21-26
Pre-Algebra (3rd, 4th): p. 638, #14-26, 29, 30

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Counting Trees

Today we learned how to make counting trees to determine the number of possible outcomes when working with two or more events. Tonight's homework is from the textbook.

Math (1st, 2nd, 5th): Section 9.2, problems 7-12

Pre-Algebra (3rd, 4th): Page 638, problems 10-13. 4th Period also has Worksheet 1.3 ACE. (These problems may be quite challenging. To earn a stamp, I must see evidence that you tried the problems!)

If you would like to explore probability a little further, you can find a coin-toss simulator here, and a spinner here.
These are from the National Library of Virtual Manipulatives, which is a great site to explore! The site requires Java, which is a free download.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Tuesday, January 10

I gave a worksheet for homework (except 4th period) that may be a bit of a challenge. I will check to see evidence of trying, and we will discuss it further tomorrow!

Challenge to Math Team: Calculate the number of license plates possible in Alabama!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Monday, January 9

We are continuing to work on probability this week. Each class seems to be at a different place right now due to various interuptions beyond our control! Tonight's homework was to complete worksheet 1.2 ACE. (Third period did this over the weekend and had no homework tonight!)

On Tuesday we will once again be taking a practice ARMT test. Only three months left until the real thing! There will be a reward for improving your score throughout the year. More details coming soon! We want EVERYONE to be working at grade level or above grade level.

Next week we will spend some time looking at how to construct responses for the open-ended questions on the ARMT. In these questions students are not given answer choices. Instead, they are given a blank page, a multi-part question, and they are asked to explain their reasoning. Seventh graders have four open-ended questions, and one will be about probability. These questions are worth 3 points each, and the other questions are only worth one point. To receive the full 3 points, students must answer the question correctly and explain their reasoning. A correct answer without explanation will only earn 1 point, and correct reasoning with minor careless errors can score higher to earn a 2. This takes some adjustment in thinking for the students, and I want to be sure they feel comfortable with this type question.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Ellie's (Grade 7) Math Blog: Let's Begin!

I found another blog by Mr. K that is for seventh graders! Check out some of the great links he posted! They have covered some of the same things we studied last semester. The link below will take you to the first post. Clicking on "Home" at the bottom of the page will allow you to see all of the posts. Let me know if you find this to be helpful.

Ellie's (Grade 7) Math Blog: Let's Begin!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Pre-Cal 20S: Cubeoban Sunday

Pre-Cal 20S: Cubeoban Sunday

Here is the original post by Mr. K. I am not sure what copyright issues I need to be concerned about.


Cubeoban is a fun game that is played by pushing and pulling blocks until they are in their designated place. Click here to play.

I found this game on another teacher's blog. His name is Darren Kuropatwa, and he is doing some amazing things with his students. You can check out one of his blogs here.

I've made it to level 28 so far. Can anyone beat me?

Friday, January 06, 2006

Happy New Year!

Welcome back to school! We have a busy semester ahead of us. We will be preparing to take the Alabama Reading and Mathematics Test in April and making sure that everyone is ready for eighth grade!

We are beginning this semester by studying probability. We will be working out of a supplemental unit called What Do You Expect? Students will be working with a partner as they play different games that will help them discover how to find the probability of compound events. The following is an example of a compound event: "A jar contains 3 red marbles and 2 black marbles. All the marbles are the same size and there are no other marbles in the jar. On the first selection, a marble is chosen at random and not replaced. Then a second marble is chosen at random. What is the probability that the marbles chosen at random will be a black marble and a red marble?"

Here is what I assigned for homework this week:

Wednesday: Worksheet, "Homework 1.1"

Thursday: Worksheet, "9-1: Simple Events" (7th grade math students had this sheet in their Practice:Skills workbook)

Friday: Worksheet, "1.2 ACE" (3rd period needs to complete this by Monday. All other classes have until Tuesday to finish.)

If your child had their work when I checked it, I stamped it. The next test will be Friday, and I will take up work on that day.