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Pre-Algebra in 9th Grade

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    #16
    Re: Pre-Algebra in 9th Grade

    Originally posted by Mom2mthj View Post
    Jen,

    I am sorry that your son is having trouble with physics! Reading back through the thread, I am curious how he is doing in pre-algebra? Did you restart or just keep going?

    Can you send a picture of his work? Unit conversions are math and they even get significant attention in early engineering classes. I am curious how he is approaching them and how neat his work is. They require analysis and careful work and are not a “no-brainer”. Has he been working for 7 weeks on the same section or has he had trouble on multiple types of problems?

    Sorry for so many questions, but I don’t really want to give advice without knowing the big picture.

    Here are his exercises from Chapter 2 conversions. He didn’t show his work on the motion exercises so I didn’t include them here. His pre-algebra work is much neater.

    They’re currently on Chapter 3 in physics — their teacher has been taking a lot of extra time on calculations since some of the other kids are struggling too. He said it makes sense in class and then he gets home and draws a complete blank.
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    Last edited by jen1134; 10-09-2018, 07:42 PM.
    Jennifer


    2018-2019
    DS-14 & DS-15 (MP9 Literature, Novare Intro to Physics, Light to the Nations I (CTP), MPOA for: Latin, Pre-Algebra, Ref/Con
    DS-12 (6M)
    DS-10 (SC3)
    DD-8 (MP2)
    DD-6 (SC2)
    DD-3 (NT using SCB for gradual intro to JrK)

    Comment


      #17
      Re: Pre-Algebra in 9th Grade

      Originally posted by jen1134 View Post
      Here are his exercises from Chapter 2 conversions. He didn’t show his work on the motion exercises so I didn’t include them here. His pre-algebra work is much neater.

      They’re currently on Chapter 3 in physics — their teacher has been taking a lot of extra time on calculations since some of the other kids are struggling too. He said it makes sense in class and then he gets home and draws a complete blank.

      [ATTACH=CONFIG]956[/ATTACH]
      ETA: in pre-algebra, he has made 100% on his homework submissions, his quiz for Chapters 1.1-1.4 was in the 70's
      Jennifer


      2018-2019
      DS-14 & DS-15 (MP9 Literature, Novare Intro to Physics, Light to the Nations I (CTP), MPOA for: Latin, Pre-Algebra, Ref/Con
      DS-12 (6M)
      DS-10 (SC3)
      DD-8 (MP2)
      DD-6 (SC2)
      DD-3 (NT using SCB for gradual intro to JrK)

      Comment


        #18
        Re: Pre-Algebra in 9th Grade

        Hi Jenn,
        If I focus on the unit conversion portion of your question, I would work with him on setting up unit fractions. 1000mg = 1 g, so which do we put in the numerator, which in the denominator to cancel the unit and leave the desired unit. 1000 g = 1 kg, which do we put in the numerator, which in the denominator?

        He should write the fraction with the number and the unit above and below the fraction bar; it is difficult to type it out the way it should look. He should cancel the units above and below the fraction bar to leave the desired unit. (Can cancel common units above and below the fraction bar, just like canceling a common factor in fraction multiplication.)

        I am guessing that he doesn't even realize that grams is needed here. I would spend a lot of time writing unit fractions for all the common conversions: 1609m = 1 mile; 2.54 cm = 1 inch, 1000cm^3 = 1 L, etc.

        The idea is that he will realize after the first step that he didn't get to kg, so he needs another unit fraction, 1 kg = 1000 g.

        How is he doing with scientific notation and using that properly in his calculator? That will help him compute the right value in the right form. Hollie can assist him with that skill.

        I don't remember, did he do Physical Science last year? Ch 8 and beyond really focuses on unit conversions, and teaches it at a pre-algebra level. There are so many things going on in Intro Physics (sig digs, more advanced algebraic solving of equations, etc) that it may all be getting jumbled. There is an abstract reasoning ability that develops at different times for different students. You can keep working patiently with him, but he just may not be ready (even though he is 15 1/2, and I know that is hard!) The fact that he wasn't ready to move on to algebra is a strong indicator that Intro Physics may be too advanced in math.

        If he did not do Physical Science last year, I would let him keep attending Intro Physics with the co-op and doing the labs, etc. But I would drop back and have him work through Phys Science Ch8 and Ch10, which will help him with the math at his current skill level.
        Cindy Davis
        Science and Math teacher at Highlands Latin School - Indianapolis
        ds-24 college graduate: working, reading, writing
        ds-23 college graduate: 1st year med school
        dd-21 college junior: Nursing

        Comment


          #19
          Re: Pre-Algebra in 9th Grade

          Thank you everyone!! We’re going to get the Physical Science book so we can work through the chapters Cindy mentioned. We’ve also started working on the fractions and he’s doing two calculations a day from Chapter 3 in Physics with me there to support as needed. He’s definitely getting it. It will just take one on one coaching for a long while to help him order his thinking and catch disconnects. I think his grade for the year will come from one test at the end of each semester. That way we can focus on mastery from week to week without the “I’m a failure” syndrome he gets from weekly quizzes. Thank you all again — and Carlyn, thank you for reminding me about Anne’s background!
          Jennifer


          2018-2019
          DS-14 & DS-15 (MP9 Literature, Novare Intro to Physics, Light to the Nations I (CTP), MPOA for: Latin, Pre-Algebra, Ref/Con
          DS-12 (6M)
          DS-10 (SC3)
          DD-8 (MP2)
          DD-6 (SC2)
          DD-3 (NT using SCB for gradual intro to JrK)

          Comment

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