I am so behind on my Algebra 2 notebook. Keeping up with notebooks for Algebra 1, Algebra 2, and Stats this year is killing me. Actually, it killed me last year, too. I need to get in the habit of gluing my notes in the notebook while my students are doing the same. That just hasn't happened yet.
So, I realize I have a lot of notes to get caught up on and post to this blog. But, I'm just going to jump in where we're at this moment. We are learning about all the things our graphing calculators can do. First up: finding the x-intercept and y-intercept of a graph. These instructions are written for using a TI-84 because that's what I have a class set of.
As I was typing these up, I did a quick google to find if I could find something already typed up. Nothing looked pretty enough to just print and glue in our notebooks. But, in the process, I did learn a new way of finding the y-intercept using the calculator. When I was in high school, my teacher taught us to always use the table on the calculator to find the y-intercept. Y'all probably already know this, but you can also use the Value Option from the Calculate menu. This was news to me! I put both options down for my students. Giving students multiple solving options is something I'm trying to do a better job of incorporating in my classes.
Another thing that throws my students off is the fact that they are rarely asked to find the y-intercept of a graph on their end-of-instruction exam. Instead, they will be asked to find the roots, solutions, or zeros of an equation. I really try to drive home the fact that anytime they are asked for roots, solutions, or zeros, they are really just being asked to find the x-intercept.
I told my students to draw a box around this fact, star it, add exclamation points, or anything that would make it stand out in their notes. They noted that the way I had boxed it in on mine looked like the state of Oklahoma. I joked that I had done that on purpose because the state of Oklahoma was requiring them to know this fact.
My students really struggled with the left bound and right bound instructions, so I shared with them a tip I learned from @druinok. She has her students place the cursor as close to the point as possible and then click the left arrow a few times for left bound and the right arrow a few times for right bound. My students thought this was the best trick ever. It really cut down on the mistakes they were making.
If you think you could use these with your students, I've uploaded them here.