by Mike Dunkle

Algebra or Pre-Algebra

Solving Equations

Mike Dunkle
To obtain a downloadable copy of the worksheet that accompanies this bulletin board, click on the button below.

TITLE: Math Mountain

SUBJECT: Algebra or Pre-Algebra.

TOPIC: The topic of this bulletin board is solving for a variable in an equation.

INTERACTIVITY: The idea of this bulletin board is that the students will solve for different variables in equations. I reused the variables to emphasize that one equation does in fact build on another. You can’t move on to the next step if you haven’t properly solved for the one before it. To help aid in the students sense of accomplishment I added a little action figure to the board. He has Velcro attached to his back and can be moved up to different points along the mountain at there are Velcro circles at next to every equation. The idea is that as they solve for a variable Sir Edmund Hillary gets closer to the top of his mountain. Thus when they’ve solved for all the variables Sir Edmund Hillary will have reached the summit and conquered Mt. Everest, much like they’ve conquered the "mountain" of solving for a variable.

DIRECTIONS FOR USE: The year is 1953 and Sir Edmund Hillary is ascending the highest peak in the world, Mt. Everest. Your job is to help Sir Edmund Hillary reach the top of his mountain by reaching the top of yours. Starting at the base of the mountain solve the first equation for a. As you do this move up to the next equation. As you move to the next equation move Sir Edmund Hillary up with you, via the Velcro on his back. For every answer you find both you and Sir Edmund Hillary get that much closer to the peaks of your respective mountains. When you reach the top you will have scaled the mountain that is solving for a variable. Good luck!

TIME: This should take a student less then 15 minutes to complete.

SPECIAL CONSTRUCTION: The bulletin board background was made of felt while the mountain was made out of another fabric. First I cut out the shape of the mountain and then used hemming tape to secure the mountain onto the background. Leave the bottom of the mountain unattached to the background. I then stuffed the mountain full of a synthetic cotton-like stuffing and sewed up the bottom. The snow on the mountain is more of the synthetic cotton. Just pull it apart to give a snowy look and glue it onto the mountain. Any glue that dries clear or white will work fine.

CREDIT: For completing this assignment I would give my students some form of extra-credit. The exact amount is unsure due to differences in total points possible. I would have it worth approximately the same as a quiz grade.

Mike Dunkle