Introduction to Transformations Marbleslides!

I just made my first Marbleslides in Desmos!  It was incredibly easy, and the students said it was a really fun way to learn.

This Marbleslides activity introduces students to transformation form and lets them practice moving graphs around with Marbleslides (SUCCESS!!) using the new parent graphs they just learned.  My students know transformation form with linears, y = a(x – h) + k, but have not moved any other graphs around yet.  (For this activity I used the absolute value, quadratic, square root, and cube root functions.)

I have two goals with Desmos this year.

  1. Shorten my Desmos Activity Builders, so that I have time in class to practice with the students outside of Desmos.
  2. Make worksheets to accompany my Desmos Activity Builders, so the students can have notes to look back on.

I felt this activity accomplished both, and my students really seemed to enjoy it.  I have provided the activity and the worksheet for you to try.  I would love feedback!

Desmos Introduction to Transformations Marbleslides



QR Code Stations – Function Notation

We have been working on “building” equations to solve for x , literal equations and an introduction to functions.  After flooding my students with function notation, I decided we needed a day to practice.  One of my favorite ways to let students practice is stations.  I love station work because they allow students to move around the room AND work with different people all period.  I let them pick their partners to start, and I put 2 sets of partners at each station.  They can work with all of the people at their table.  However, I strongly encourage them to work at their own pace.  If they finish and want to move on, or want to stay longer it’s all ok.  Students that work at about the same pace usually end up with each other. No students are bored waiting on others to finish, and I can spend time working with students who have question.  I rove from station to station answer questions so I feel like I get to connect with individuals as I help them.  It is a great day all around!

I still use the clear picture frames to display the problems, but now I put the answers online, so all students can easily see them and have them for later.  This also allows students who may not finish (or who are absent) to access all of the questions and solutions later.  Students can access the answers by scanning a QR code at each station.  Many of my kids have a scan app, but I found out yesterday (from the students of course) that Snapchat has a QR reader.  Here are my function stations.  The QR codes will be active until the end of the 16-17 school year.




Monthly Algebra 2 Blog Posts! #Alg2Chat

Thanks to all of the Algebra 2 Teachers who submitted a blog post this month!  Don’t forget about our Algebra 2 Twitter Chat, this Thursday at 9PM EST (#Alg2Chat).

We would love to have you blog with us!  Here are the topics that we will be discussing at the #Alg2Chat’s on Twitter this month.  It would be great for you to blog so you can share your blog link during the discussions.

9/8/16 – Student Engagement

9/15/16 – Rich Problems for Algebra 2

9/22/16 – Making Groups Work

9/29/16 – How You Use Technology

Fill out this form to submit your blog post.

Algebra 2 Twitter Chat! Thursday, 9/8/16 at 9PM EST #Alg2Chat

The first Algebra 2 chat will be on this Thursday, 9/8/16 at 9:00 PM, EST.  The topic this week will be Student Engagement.  What can we do to get students excited about mathematics (even if they don’l love Algebra 2)?

The chats will happen once a week on Thursdays at 9PM on Twitter at the hashtag #Alg2Chat.

If you have never participated in a Twitter Chat before, you can read this post for tips!

Topics for this month:

9/8/16 – Student Engagement

9/15/16 – Rich Problems for Algebra 2

9/22/16 – Making Groups Work

9/29/16 – How You Use Technology


Teach Math in LA!

The Archer School for Girls is looking for a full time math teacher.  It’s a private school and BONUS, you’d get to teach with the amazing Chris Luz.  This is a dream job, and they are hiring now. Here are the details.

The Archer School for Girls is an educational community that supports and challenges young women to discover their passions and realize their true potential.

  • We provide a rigorous, integrated college preparatory curriculum that fosters critical thinking and intellectual curiosity.
  • We create and sustain a collaborative teaching and learning environment that explores and refines the ways girls learn best.
  • We help girls to become leaders and life-long learners, strengthening their capacity to contribute positively to their communities.
  • We strengthen girls’ voices in a diverse and culturally rich environment.
  • We embrace possibility, promote challenge-seeking and support risk-taking.
  • We encourage girls to develop meaningful relationships with peers and faculty rooted in honesty, respect and responsibility.
  • We graduate courageous, committed and ethical young women who take responsibility for their own physical, financial and emotional well-being.

We are seeking a full-time Upper School Mathematics teacher starting August 2016. The Upper School mathematics curriculum integrates all strands of mathematics until Pre-Calculus; however, the current opening includes two sections of Honors Integrated Math III and three sections of Integrated Math II.

The ideal candidate has a degree in Mathematics, 3-5 years of secondary school teaching experience, a strong educational background, exemplary teaching skills, a desire for ongoing professional development, and a passion for his/her desire to teach and learn from young people.

Candidates should also have demonstrated expertise in student-centered, collaborative, and inquiry-based teaching methodologies. A desire to collaborate with colleagues, the flexibility to teach at multiple grade levels, and an active interest in teaching in a one-to-one laptop classroom are essential. Experience with project-based and technology-based learning is preferred.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to, teaching 5 courses, serving as an advisor, and participating in extra-curricular school activities.

No phone calls please. More information on Archer can be found at The Archer School for Girls is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Algebra 17 Magazine Mock Up

This should be titled, “Things I Should NOT Be Doing on My Last Day of Summer Break”!  But this was too fun, so I had to!  THIS is just one of the many, many reasons that you should be active on Twitter if you are a math teacher!

It all started with this tweet from Meg about this picture on my Algebra Review blog post.

That lead to a series of hilarious tweets by Meg and Mattie. And then the challenge, which I quickly accepted.

Well, I just did the cover.  I mean, it IS my last day of summer break!

Screen Shot 2016-08-05 at 1.31.28 PM.png

Featured are two of my amazing algebra students from last year.


Even though I just did the cover, wouldn’t it be so much fun to write this for real??  I would LOVE for you to join in on the fun and add a fun story title.  Or even better, WRITE AN ARTICLE.  How awesome and fun would this be to share with our students?  We should write REAL articles to help them, but with a funny spin.  Humor helps everything.  :)

** Update: I showed the featured student the cover. Not only did she love it, she offered to write an article!  Wouldn’t this be a fun assignment for our students?

Here is a Tweet by Tweet account of how the action played out on Twitter today.  Read below or click to view it on Storify.

Algebra 1 Concepts Review for Algebra 2 Students

Our school is still on the traditional curriculum.  Our students do Algebra 1, then Geometry, then Algebra 2.  I’m sure that they remember everything from two years ago, but just in case, I always try to be a little proactive at the beginning of the year.  Last year I incorporated Delta Math at the beginning of the year for students to practice basics and Algebra 1 skills on a weekly basis.  I found it immensely beneficial as it reacquainted the students with skills they had learned in the past, but needed refreshing. This enabled me to spend more class time on Algebra 2, instead of reviewing Algebra 1.

For this year, I decided to extend that program by starting in the summer.  My school allows students to take any class they have the pre-requisite for, even if they were not recommended.  We have two levels of Algebra 2, and I teach the more advanced level. I have a fair number of students this year that were not recommended for the advanced Algebra 2 class, but have chosen to take it.  So, I must be deliberate in structuring Algebra review and support so that these students can have the greatest chance of success in my class.

Optional Algebra 1 Summer Assignment on Delta Math:  There is one question per topic (40 topics total).  The questions range from rounding to factoring.  I did not want to make it too difficult, as I do not want students frustrated over the summer.Screen Shot 2016-08-04 at 4.16.36 PMThere is only one assigned question per skill, but since it is on Delta Math students can answer multiple questions if they would like more practice on a certain skill.  As you can see, this student choose to do multiple problems on several skills, even though I only assigned one.


It only shows the number of CORRECT problems in the Record.


In the overview I can also see which skills students felt they needed to practice more.

Pre-Assessment:  In the first week back I will give my students a pre-assessment on Algebra 1 skills similar to the problems from the Delta Math Assignment.  I grade the pre-assessment by assigning each skill a concept score, B(Beginning), D(developing), or P(Proficient).  This will help them determine which Algebra skills they need more practice on.  I do not record the pre-assessment score in my grade book.  They will retest in at a later date for an actual grade.

Algebra 1 Concepts Review :

After the pre-assessment students need to review (or relearn) concepts so they can strengthen their Algebra skills and have more success on the upcoming Algebra assessment.  I teach freshmen and sophomores and I know it is difficult for some students to do this on their own, so I provide the following to support them.

  • I have an Algebra 1 Concepts Review Sheet that I will give to all of my students.
  • I hold help sessions during lunch and after school to help students with basic algebra skills they are still struggling with.
  • I leave the Delta Math Algebra 1 Review Summer Assignment up so students can keep working on skills.

Here is my Algebra 1 Concepts Review Sheet.🙂

Screen Shot 2016-08-04 at 4.28.31 PM

Algebra 2 Monthly Blog Spot

I can’t wait to read about everything other Algebra 2 teachers are planning and doing in their classrooms! I thought it would be fun if we all blogged and then I could post a compilation of our blogs about once a month.

I would love for us to blog about how your curriculum is organized (sequence of topics).  I think it would be great to see as it seems we are all usually teaching the same topics at about the same time.
Other great ideas for blog posts could be:

  • First day / first week activities
  • Goals for this year
  • Great icebreakers
  • Math class set-up

You don’t have to choose!  If you go crazy and want to blog about all of them, please do!  Submit every post to the form below and I will post them all!  And don’t forget to tweet out your post with the #Alg2Chat hashtag.  Also, if you are in a blogging frenzy, check out #MTBoSblaugust, and include that hashtag to your post as well!  You don’t have to wait, you can get started now!  :)

Join us on Twitter and even with blogging!

Please join us on Twitter at #Alg2Chat.  If you aren’t on Twitter yet, now is a GREAT time to start.  You will be amazed at the resources that will come right to you!  Also, if you have always wanted to start a blog, do it!  We have a great website, Exploring The MTBoS, that can help you with both!

Algebra 2 Math Chats (#Alg2Chat) Coming in September!  Thursday nights at 9PM EST

Check out #Alg2Chat Thursday nights at 9PM EST, beginning in September.  If you are interested in helping moderate, or have some great topics you would like to discuss, please tweet me at @jreulbach.

Click here to enter your blog post, or fill in the form below.🙂


Algebra 2 Teacher Blogs!

Check out these blogs from teachers who teach Algebra 2! If you teach Algebra 2, Pre-Calculus, Math 2, or Math 3, then please scroll down to add your blog to the list!

These are the blogs of the teachers who signed up to connect already.  You can fill out the form at the bottom.  I will add you to the list when I update this page (about twice a month).

Check out the #Alg2Chat hashtag on Twitter starting in September.  We will be meeting Thursday nights, 9PM EST.

Amy McNabb
Jonathan Schoolcraft
Henri Picciotto
Jonathan klupp
Dylan Kane
Wendy Menard
Shaun Carter
Lisa Winer
Mark Kreie
Andrew Stadel
Trever Reeh
Shai McGowan
Sean Sweeney
Bonnie Davis
Lisa Henry
Brandy Cajudoy
Melissa Allman
Ali Grace Eiland
Tara Daas
Lane Walker
Mary Williams
Matt Baker
Julie Reulbach
Brian Palacios
Lauren Goldfish
Marsha Foshee
Heather Rosson
Nolan Doyle
Jennifer abel
Laurie Hailer
Christie Bradshaw
Robin Mathews
Sara VanDerWerf
Andrew BC
Steve Dull
Suzanne von Oy
Madelyne Bettis
Nate Goza
Jennifer Kelly
Tara Daas
Jill Weitgenant
Jennifer White
Nathaniel Highstein
Anna Vance
Jennifer Fairbanks
Sara B. Vaughn
Taylor Horn
Scott Keltner
Kat Glass
Amy Gruen
Meg Craig
Lois Burke
Rachel Fruin

If you teach Algebra 2, Pre-Calculus, Math 2, or Math 3, please add your blog to the list!

Once added, you can see the other Algebra 2 teachers in this spreadsheet.