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Solving Equations – forming equations

October 17, 2014

Two quick thoughts. One:

To calculate my (UK) adult shoe size, I multiply the length (in inches) by 3 and then subtract 25. If I have a shoe size of 9, what is the length of my feet?

I never actually really thought about how shoe sizes were done but now I know.

Thought two:

I terms of teaching, my year 10s are looking at solving equations currently and, as part of a homework, I set them the above question. It was alongside some others that were similar to it, mixed with some that were far more standard like:

Solve 8x -2 = 3x + 8

The point of this post is just to say that I’ve always taught ‘forming equations’ as a separate topic after looking at solving some equations. This homework showed me that that isn’t really necessary and (with the right class) you can just do it all in one go. They didn’t question it and just formed the necessary equations as they went along.

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