Thursday, February 25, 2016

Review for Chapter 14 Test (Day 110)

This is what I wrote last year about today's activity and review:

Today I finally post the vector activity that I've been planning this week. But today is supposed to be the review for the Chapter 14 Test. Well, that's no problem -- technically this activity counts as part of the test review.

There is also a page to cut out with 36 given vectors -- since as I mentioned earlier, I don't want the students to choose the vectors. Of course, cutting out the vectors is time consuming -- even if the teacher does it before the class -- and those tiny slips of paper are easily lost. Then teachers will have to cut them out several times throughout the day.

Another way to have the students choose vectors would be to have something larger represent the vectors, such as playing cards. The playing cards can be converted to vectors, as follows:

For the horizontal component:
Ace through 10 -- valued 1 through 10
Jack -- valued -2
Queen -- valued -1
King -- valued 0

For the vertical component, use the suit:
Clubs -- valued -1
Diamonds -- valued 0
Hearts -- valued 1
Spades -- valued 2

Eight of Diamonds -- (8, 0)
Ace of Clubs -- (1, -1)
Jack of Hearts -- (-2, 1)

Because they are larger, playing cards are less likely to be lost than the little slips of paper that I provide for this activity. But there are problems with using playing cards. First of all, the conversion from playing card to vector is another step that the first partner can get wrong -- and once again this may frustrate the second partner. (I've heard that some people don't even know the difference between clubs and spades!) Furthermore, vectors with large components, such as (8, 0) for the eight of diamonds above, become (30, -2) after performing the steps in Task Three -- and then they are asked to graph that vector (30, -2) in Task Four. So I leave it up to individual teachers whether to use playing cards or the slips of paper that I provide.

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