I actually write this article to help highschool and college students that are majoring in math. My nephew Marc will be so happy to read this.
When students understand the underlying patterns of algebra, and then learn to extend those patterns, something miraculous occurs. Students learn algebra! It makes sense to them, and they even enjoy it!
Brain research has confirmed that it is through recognition of patterns that the brain learns. Patterns of Algebra takes advantage of that natural learning, and leads students to discover for themselves all the big ideas relating to linear and quadratic functions.
Do you need tools in order to learn Algebra? In my opinion a good algebra book, a great scientific/graphing calculator and of course your brain is enough to master Algebra. If you are interested in purchasing a calculator, please view this What Is The Best Graphing Calculator Today article.
When students discover for themselves the patterns upon which algebra is built, they quickly and easily master linear and quadratic functions. Much of what we call education is based on memorization. And what students are asked to memorize makes little sense to them or to the frustrated teachers who struggle to motivate and encourage their students.
Some teachers want to “teach for understanding,” but are not always clear on what it is that students should understand. Patterns of Algebra does away with memorization, choosing instead to introduce students to the patterns which form the foundations of algebra.
Students are lead to discover big ideas, and then to build on those ideas as they progress through their study of algebra. As you work through the material presented here, you will find that concepts are presented when they are needed.
It is what has been called “just in time” learning, as opposed to the more conventional “just in case” learning. When students can use and build on what they learn, their learning accelerates and their motivation is resurrected.