My students “discovered” slope-intercept form in class last Friday through a paper-pencil graphing exploration that had just the right frustration level to get them talking, exploring, and revising until they “got it”. While we didn’t have a lot of time to come back together and formalize y = mx + b on Friday, I felt like they’d done enough to tackle Michael Fenton’s “Match My Line” today. Last year, my students accessed each Desmos graphing task from a ThingLink. This year, with the birth of Desmos Activity Builder, students tackled each challenge with a smoother living-in-Desmos work-flow.
Before we visited student.desmos.com, I gave a brief assessment using ThatQuiz to be sure we all remembered last Friday’s discoveries. Initially, I had planned to use “Match My Line” and then let students play a linear “Polygraph” activity… but we never got to the Polygraph.
Did you ever just wish another teacher was in the room with you to witness that this-is-actually-happening kind of lesson? That was today! After circulating with a goofy grin on my face for longer than I should have, I had the sense to grab a notepad and jot down some student comments I heard as they worked. I lost count of how many times students threw both hands up in the air as they said these, and many other comments, out loud:
“See?!? I’m smart!”
“I didn’t know we could use decimals!”
“I GOT IT!!! I GOT IT!!!”
“… I missed it!”
“I’m almost done – I feel so smart right now.”
“Got it! Perfect!”
“OH! I did it wrong!”
“This is making me SO MAD… wait… BANG! GOT IT!”
and my favorite… as the bell was ringing to dismiss for the day…
“This should be our lesson every day.”