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Still catching up... Guided Discovery of Discriminant

Way back on March 13, I used a less directed approach to teaching the discriminant than I had in the past. The Monday before, I was visiting a school in Houston. In one of the math classes, the teacher did a lesson that did a bit of discovery. which inspired me to change things up a bit.

In the past, I have done a quick lecture on the topic and set my students free to practice in pairs as quickly as possible. I mean the discriminant is way boring so best to go quickly so the teenagers don't realize this!

Building on the idea that initial struggle correlates with eventual retention, I made this quick and easy change.

Students work in pairs. One student is in charge of graphing the functions on desmos. They use this guided handout and develop the rule.

How does it match up to my (ever evolving) inventory of what makes a good an engaging lesson:
  • fun and interesting
  • it's a game with prizes
  • problem based
  • inquiry based
  • connected to an application
  • doesn't water down the mathematics or resort to tricks
  • gets kids collaborating,talking, teaching, writing, using technology in a meaningful way
Well it only meets two of the seven. That's okay.