Week 3 Taking Note of Exponents

beethoven-5Week three was busy with tests and exponents for both Math 8 and Algebra 1.  Explanations of exponents just can’t be done without students seeking out the patterns of numbers, esp how powers of ten grow and decrease and also powers of 2.  In our interactive notebooks, we took notes listing our patterns.  We watched the Powers of 10 by Charles and Ray Eames…an oldie but a goody.  Stopping half way to discuss positive exponents and the next day discussing negative exponents.  Then we jumped into scientific notation as well.

So yesterday, the students walked into Beethoven’s 5th playing in the class.  We reviewed our patterns of exponents, and then went into discussing powers of 2.  Remember we had discussed Raja Rice a while back listing powers of 2 (positive). So we went the other direction discussing the negative exponents and their values.  And then I mention how much I wish the orchestra and band teachers could rewrite the musical notes using exponents.  (with a wink of course).   We look at the first couple measures of Beethoven’s 5th and discuss how the exponents apply to the beats of the notes  (changed it to 4/4 time to make more sense).  (insert picture here)   At the end of the class, I continued the masterpiece as they worked on their assignment….  no one mentioned the music…  I may try a little Vivaldi next week.  🙂

Can’t forget that we also discovered “Anything to the power of zero is 1” again by using patterns.  I keep asking the cheerleaders to cheer CMS and holding up their hand as a zero..  “CMS to the zero power!  We’re number 1!”….   And I expect those football players to raise their arm and make a 0 with their hand after scoring a touchdown!…  no one’s taken me up on that yet…  (wink wink).    cms-0

If there’s anything I’ve worked at this so far is wait time, and asking the students to talk to their “shoulder partner” prior to giving out an answer.  I LOVE it!  Let those proverbial crickets chirp while their thinking… there’s more going on than just silence after a question.





One thought on “Week 3 Taking Note of Exponents

Add yours

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑


PD Books


No Dewey-eyed dreamers here

Sum Math Madness

My ramblings of the things that work and things that don't work in my classroom!

haniasalem's Blog

A great WordPress.com site

this is... The Neighborhood

the Story within the Story


A great WordPress.com site


. Teaching maths and feelings mostly

Teaching to the Beat of a Different Drummer

My place to write about teaching, and math, and teaching math.


Reflections on Math Teaching


I am a passionate teacher blogging about the joys and challenges of teaching amazing fourth graders!

Pernille Ripp

Teacher. Author. Creator. Speaker. Mom.

Sara VanDerWerf

Inspiration and resources for mathematics teachers

Number Loving Beagle

Megan Schmidt's Reflective Blog about teaching, mathematics, and sometimes beagles.


Ramblings of a HS Math Teacher

Mr. Orr is a Geek.com

We can do this better

Math-n-Science = WAHOOO!

A blog about the ubiquity of mathematics and science in the middle school world

Make Math a Game

Everyone can do math!

%d bloggers like this: