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EDMA310/360 Mathematics unit planner

Carla Tirotta

Unit Overview
Unit title:
Algebraic Patterns
Content maths area:
Algebra
Grade/year level:
Six
Learning Focus (ideas extrapolated from AusVELS):
Number and Algebra
Pattern and Algebra
Understanding and Problem Solving
Rationale:
It is important for algebraic concepts such as, generalising patterns, to be introduced to
students at a primary level (Van den Heuvel-Panhuizen, Kolovou & Robitzsch,
2013). This will allow for students to develop more complex thinking
processes, which will be beneficial across all domains of the curriculum
throughout their education (Windsor, 2010).
Assumed prior knowledge of students:
Students have already had experiences working with repeating and growing patterns
from previous years in their schooling and have a basic knowledge of both types of
patterns. Student also have had experience with continuing on with sequencing patterns
(Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority, 2012).

Grouping strategies to support learning:


Students will be grouped in mixed abilities, allowing for an opportunity for students to
learn off each other (Van den Heuvel-Panhuizen, Kolovou & Robitzsch 2013). Groups

will be selected based on the progress of students throughout the unit.

Overview of assessment:
The types of assessment being used throughout this unit will consist of, observations,
anecdotal notes and self-assessments. These particular assessments will be used to
allow the teacher to become aware of the students understanding of the topic, and what
misconceptions they might have. The formative assessments being used, such as selfassessment, will help students take control of their learning and keep track of the new
discoveries they are making throughout the unit. The summative assessments being
used, such as anecdotal notes, will allow for teachers to identify the areas of content
that needs to be covered in more detail. In addition to making observations and taking
anecdotal notes, work samples will be collected as evidence of understanding.

References:

Van den Heuvel-Panhuizen, M., Kolovou, A., & Robitzsch, A. (2013). Primary school
students strategies in early algebra problem solving supported by an online
game. Educational Studies In Mathematics, 84(3), 281-307.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10649-013-9483-5
Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority. (2012). Mathematics scope and
sequence (F-10) [Curriculum document]. Retrieved from
http://ausvels.vcaa.vic.edu.au/Level6?layout=1&d=M
Windsor, W. (2011). How problem solving can develop and algebraic perspective of
mathematics.Australian Primary Mathematics Classroom, 16(4), 8-12.

MATHEMATICS UNIT PLANNER


Topic: Number Algebra
Key mathematical understandings

Continuous patterns follow rules

All patterns can be generalized

Number sentences can be used to describe


patterns

Patterns can grow or be repetitive

Year Level: Six

Date: 16th June 2015

Level descriptions:

Continue and create sequences involving whole numbers, fractions and decimals. Describe the rule used to create the
sequence (ACMNA133)

Proficiency strand(s):
Understanding:
Recognise that there are different types of patterns
Identify repeating and growing patterns
Understand how to describe and generalise patterns

Make generalisations about different patterns

Construct rules describing how patterns continue


or grow

Identify constants and variables in a pattern

Differentiate between a growing and repeating


pattern

Possible misconceptions (list of misconceptions related to


the mathematical idea/topic that students might develop):

Week: 5

Key AusVELS Focus / Standard (taken directly from AusVELS documents):


Content strand(s):
Number and Algebra
Sub-strand(s):
Pattern and Algebra

Key skills to develop and practise

Term: 2

Confusion between growing pattern and repeating


pattern
Not knowing how patterns grow
Not knowing patterns can be generalised

Key equipment / resources:

Key vocabulary (be specific and include definitions of key words

Link to applet:
http://nlvm.usu.edu/en/nav/frames_asid_184_g_1
_t_2.html?from=topic_t_2.htm

Computers and iPads

Number pattern cards

Paper/ stationary

Coloured counters

appropriate to use with students)

Growing: patterns that grow larger or smaller


Repeating: patterns that repeat in a loop
Constant: part of a pattern that never changes
Generalising: a sentence or rule that can be
applied to all situations
Rules: statement explaining how a pattern grows
and changes
Formulas: an equation or number sentence, which
can be made to describe the changes in a pattern
and can be applied to other circumstances
Patterns: something that follows a rule
Variables: parts of the pattern that change

Key probing questions (focus questions that will be used to

Links to other contexts (if applicable, e.g., inquiry unit focus,

develop understanding to be used during the sequence of lessons; 3 5


probing questions):

current events, literature, etc.):

How did you know what colour came next?


How would you describe this pattern in a
sentence?
What type of pattern do you think this is?
What remains constant in this pattern?
What variables can you see in this pattern?
Could there be a different way of seeing this

P.E- having to abide by rules in P.E games like


following rules in mathematics

Learning
strategies/ skills

Analysing
Checking
Classifying
Co-operating
Considering options
Designing
Elaborating

MATHEMATICAL
FOCUS

Estimating
Explaining
Generalising
Hypothesising
Inferring
Interpreting
Justifying

TUNING IN
(WHOLE CLASS FOCUS)

pattern?
Does each way of seeing have the same
result for the next object in the pattern?
How is the pattern growing?
What generalisations can you make about this
pattern?
Is there a number sentence you could make
to describe the pattern?

Listening
Locating information
Making choices
Note taking
Observing
Ordering events
Organising

INVESTIGATIONS
SESSION
(INDEPENDENT LEARNING)

Performing
Persuading
Planning
Predicting
Presenting
Providing feedback
Questioning

Reading
Recognising bias
Reflecting
Reporting
Responding
Restating
Revising

REFLECTION & MAKING


CONNECTIONS
SESSION

Seeing patterns
Selecting information
Self-assessing
Sharing ideas
Summarising
Synthesising

ADAPTATIONS

Testing
Viewing
Visually representing
Working independently
Working to a timetable

ASSESSMENT
STRATEGIES

(WHOLE CLASS FOCUS)

Session 1
Introduction to
patterns
Basic
understanding
that there a
different types
of patterns that
have different
rules

Using laptops or iPads,


ask students to visit:
http://nlvm.usu.edu/en/nav/
frames_asid_184_g_1_t_2.
html?from=topic_t_2.htm
Using this applet, they will
need to investigate and
complete patterns online
Probing questions:
How did you know what
colour came next?
How would you describe
this pattern in a sentence?
What type of pattern do
you think this is?

Handout cards with


different number patterns
(see Appendix 1). Explain
to students that they will
need to continue on the
number pattern or fill in the
gaps individually.

Short discussion about the


difference between
repeating patterns and
growing number patterns.

They will also need to write


a rule for each pattern,
describing how the pattern
grows in one sentence.

What is the same about


these two types of
patterns?
What is different?

Probing questions:
What do you notice about
this pattern?
How are the numbers
increasing?
How do you know what
number will come next?

Discussion of identified
rules.

Enabling prompt:
For students who are
struggling, there can be a
table that is allocated for
students to work together
guided by the teacher.
Use of simpler number
patters can be
implemented
Extending prompt:
More complex number
patterns can be included
with larger numbers
Student can begin to work
with fraction number
patterns
What do you notice about
the pattern?
How could you describe
the changes being made to
the pattern?
What is the relationship
between each number?

Observing students ability


to correctly complete
patterns, taking anecdotal
notes.
Have a self-assessment
where students assess
what they already know.

Session 2
Basic
understanding
of the
characteristics
of growing and
repeating
patterns

Session 3
Further
understanding
of growing
patterns
Basic
understanding
of how to
generalise
patterns

Acting on prior knowledge,


have student brainstorm
what they already know
about growing patterns and
how they are they are
different to repeating
patterns.
Probing questions:
Tell me everything you
already know about
growing patterns?

Handout images of growing


patterns (Appendix 3).
Have students draw what
they think the next image in
the pattern would look like
and explain why they think
it would look that way.
Probing question:
What changes can you see
with each shape?
Is the shape getting larger?

Put up image of the house


(See Appendix 2).
Explain that there is a
street where each house
looks exactly the same.
Questions: If there are five
trees with one house on
the street, how many trees
will there be with 10
houses on the street?
Probing questions:
How might you count how
many trees there will be for
more than one house?

Put up image of
Cassowary for class to look
at. (See Appendix 4). In
pairs, students can begin
to analyse the pattern and
draw what the cassowary
image would look like at
age six.
Probing questions:
Would it help to section the
cassowary into different
body parts?
What parts of the
cassowary do not change?
What parts of the
cassowary do grow?

Have a class discussion,


talking about what type of
pattern they think this
question involves and
why?
Have students share their
own way of working to find
the answer.
Probing questions:
What is constant about this
pattern?
Have a discussion about
the meaning of the term
constant

Have students share the


different ways of which
they saw the pattern grow.
Put up images of different
ways of seeing the pattern
(see Appendix 5)
Discuss terms such as
variables and constants.
Probing questions:
What are some differences
between each way of
seeing?
Does each way have the
same result for the next
age in the pattern?

Enabling prompt:
For students who are
struggling to visualise the
problem, they can use
material object such as
counters. Using one colour
for the house and one
colour for the trees so they
can physically count how
many trees there would be
Extending prompt:
Students could work out
how many trees there
could be for a larger
amount of houses.
How many trees would
there be for 50 houses?
Is there another way of
working this out without
drawing the houses?
Enabling prompt:
Have students draw what
the cassowary would look
like at age four
Have the cassowary
highlighted into different
sections so students are
able to visualise changes
being made to specific
areas
What parts of the
cassowary do not change/
remain constant?
Extending prompt:
What would the cassowary
look like at age 10?
How do you know this?
What generalisations can
be made about the
pattern?

Observe and make note


of what students already
know about repeating
patterns.
Taking anecdotal notes of
students ability to answer
the question about the
house. Taking note of the
strategies those students
use and how efficient
there working out is.

Anecdotal notes of
students ability to
analyse the pattern and
make generalisations of
how it grows. Observe
and assess the accuracy
of their drawings for what
the cassowary will look
like at age 6. Take note of
responses to probing
questions to grasp an
understanding of the
students way of thinking,

Session 4
Further
understanding
of growing
patterns
Learning to
see patterns in
different ways
Making
generalisations
about patterns

Put up image of the rocket


ship constructed from
blocks on the board in front
of the class (see Appendix
6)
Ask students to imagine
they were going to call their
friend to explain what the
image looks like and how
the pattern grows. Get
each student to write down
a description of the image,
providing enough
information for his or her
friend to be able to draw
the next image in the
pattern.

Handout printed images of


patterns to all students.
Find two different ways of
seeing the pattern (See
Appendix 7). Use
highlighters to visualise
different ways of seeing
working in pairs.
Together work out what
would the seventh image in
the pattern look like. Draw
image in books

As a class make a rule for


the pattern using numbers
and words describing how
the pattern grows.

Probing questions:
What remains constant?
What variables can you
see?
How are the shapes
growing?

How many squares are


added to each section of
the shape?

Ask students to pair up


with each other.
Open task: Each student
will construct their own
growing pattern in their
book. They will need to
draw their own shape and
at least three images for
their growing pattern.

Gallery walk: Students can


walk around the class to
have a look at the different
patterns their peers have
made.

Enabling prompt:
Provide student with a
pattern, which they can
make slight changes to, to
use as their own pattern.

Have a class discussion


about what they saw and
the patterns they found to
be interesting.

Extending prompt:
Have students find what
the 100th pattern would
look like
Is there are formula that
could be made to help you
find the answer?

Probing questions:
Could we break the pattern
up into sections to describe
our way of seeing?
What letters could we use
to represent each section?

Enabling prompt:
Provide students with one
way of seeing as an
example and then get them
to find one more way of
seeing.
Instead of finding the
seventh image in the
pattern, ask students to
find the fourth
Extending prompt:
Could there be a third way
of seeing?
What would the 17th image
look like?
Can you describe this
using the rule, without
drawing the shape?

Anecdotal notes of
students ability to come
up with at least two
different ways of seeing.
Assessing the accuracy
of the generalisations
made about how the
pattern grows. Observing
student contribution to
class discussion when
creating a rule for the
pattern, assessing
students understanding
of how to make rules.

Probing questions:
What stays the same in
each image?
What changes are made in
each pattern?
How does the pattern
grow?
Session 5
Understan
ding how
to make
rules and
generalise
growing
patterns

Hand out images of


growing patterns to each
table (Appendix 8). As a
group, ask students to
develop a rule using
numbers and words to
describe how the pattern
grows.
Probing questions:
What generalisations can
be made about the
pattern?
What is constant?
What changes can you
see?

Once they have completed


their shape, they will need
to swap with their partner.
Each student will then
analyse their partners
growing pattern, create a
generalised rule and draw
what the sixth image in the
growing pattern would look

Did any of the patterns


have similar rules?

Collect work samples


from students and assess
their ability to construct a
growing pattern and
ability to create a
generalised rule for
patterns.
Have students complete
another self-assessment
indicating the new
information they have
learnt throughout the unit,
comparing it to their selfassessment from the
beginning of the unit.

like.
Probing questions:
What generalisations can
be made about the
pattern?
What is constant?
What changes can you
see?

Appendices
Appendix 1

Appendix 2

(Sourced from Ann Downtons Week Seven Lecture in EDMA360 Mathematics Learning and Teaching 2)

Appendix 3

Appendix 4 (Sourced from Jill Browns Week 7 Whole Class Task, Exploring Mathematics 2 EDMA369).

Appendix 5 (Sourced from Jill Browns Week 7 Whole Class Task, Exploring Mathematics 2 EDMA369).

Appendix 6 (Sourced from Exploring Mathematics 2 EDMA369, Semester 1, 2015 Problem Book).

Appendix 7

Appendix 8