**Key concepts:** Appreciate that expressions can be written in different ways. Use CAS to write algebraic expressions in different forms

**Apps: ** Main

Activity

Solution

## One thought on “Equivalent expressions”

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I started the activity last lesson and it worked really well. My aim was to start our algebra topic with the idea that there are multiple ways of expressing relationships and we want to know whether the resulting expressions are equivalent?

It was quite teacher directed in that it was whole group work, short small group discussions and then sharing with the whole group. It was a pleasure to see multiple ways of counting the matches emerge and to see surprise in some faces and also the appreciation that the results were the same, just counted in different ways. When we used our ClassPads to simplify some knew it was going to be the same and a few were surprised.

The next scenario, the border tiles again gave rise to a good range of counting methods. Using the difference between the outer and inner rectangles requires an expansion which the ClassPad can do, although it feels a bit like magic.

We ran out of time as I wanted to allow some time to work on their assignment, a task requiring pattern recognition and hopefully, with some more scaffolding, some algebraic proof for which ClassPad use will be fine.

Next lesson I hope to ask my students to complete the activity which is now about using ClassPad to write equivalent expressions.