If your students are like mine, about this time of year they are showing signs of Calculus Burnout. You’ve got to finish your unit on volumes and everyone is confused. The textbook you are using includes the most detailed and lengthy explanations for arriving at the symbolic formulas for finding volumes of a wide variety of solids. Your students stare… View Post

## How I Teach Polar Graphing

Why Teach Polar Graphs? Spring is right around the corner and many Precalculus teachers begin to stress about what content remains. If you are in that position, I would like to suggest that you cover the concepts for graphing polar equations. The rationale… Why is it important for Precalculus students to cover polar equations? Let’s consider the unit circle, as… View Post

## 3 Big Ideas to Introduce Slope Fields

Do you struggle to introduce SLOPE FIELDS to your students each year? The topic of slope fields was first introduced to the AP Calculus AB Course Description, in 2004. I recall confusion, in my own mind, about how I was going to introduce this concept back then. First, we need to get a handle on the BIG PICTURE ! In teaching… View Post

## Riemann Sums – The Struggle is Real!

The struggle is real! In differential calculus, we used the limit of the slopes of secant lines to define the slope of a tangent line. So, it’s only fitting that limits are also the foundation of integral calculus. After approximating area by rectangles, we discover that area can also be defined by the limit of a Riemann Sum. Students begin by… View Post

## 4 Big Theorems About Polynomials

Algebra 2 is filled with so many rich topics and concepts to be discovered. I want to take a look at Polynomial Functions today. We establish vocabulary terms and review factoring methods from Algebra 1, then it’s time to explore end-behavior, multiple roots and function behavior, relative extrema, and theorems about polynomials. But first, our students need some new computational… View Post

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