#WTPW – Week 1 – Rationalizing the Denominator

Walk the Plank Wednesday – Week 1 

Welcome to Week 1 of Walk the Plank Wednesday!!!!  A place where teachers ask for help transforming a not so exciting lesson/topic into a PIRATE lesson.  Teachers walk the plank and hope other people can help get the lesson into something amazing that students will be  running to class for.

Week 1’s topic (submitted by @jkindred13 – Love you for being to first smart one to submit a topic) — Rationalizing the Denominator in Algebra II – <insert scary music now!!!>  

Please add your ideas, thoughts, suggestions, struggles, links, etc  in the comments section below.

Information below submitted by @jkindred13

How the topic is currently taught — 

1. Basics are all there. Standards identified, learning targets included.
2. Have some examples: I do, we do, you do format.
3. I usually show kids that we make a special one with the denominator and multiply the fraction by the “special one” This emphasizes we are not changing the value of the expression just changing the looks.
4. Practice

What are some things that are/aren’t working with this lesson? —

Well, mostly it’s boring, unnecessary, old-fashioned, has no real-life application and the teacher hates teaching it.


Any additional information —

After reading #TLAP, I’ve been thinking about approaching it as “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. That is an expression with a radical in the denominator is not considered beautiful by some, but when we rationalize then we have beauty. Sort of the ugly duckling becomes a beautiful swan.