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Patterning and Algebra

Patterns

A pattern is a set of shapes, numbers, or objects that form a trend.

Example: Which can also be written as 2, 3, 4, …

Pattern Rules

Pattern rules describe what is taking place in the pattern as you move from left to right. They are simple!

 o Begin with: The pattern starts with o Followed by describing the change (adding or subtracting each time): Add/Subtract each time. o Finally, finish with: And continue.

Pattern rules are simple because they describe what is taking place as the pattern continues.

What do I now do with a Pattern?

As you move through school, you will no longer be asked to use pattern blocks, or pattern rules. Let’s now move on to the more practical uses of patterns.

Dealing with Patterns:

Step 1:

FIND A PATTERN. (from the text book, an assigned question, or create your own when studying).

Step 2:

Step 3:

CREATE A TABLE OF VALUES. Each picture in your pattern gives you two important pieces of information; the term number, and the term value.

o

o

o

Term Number – the number of the picture.

Term Value – the number of shapes in that term number. Ex.

Term

Number Value

Term

1

2

2

3

3

4

Step 4:

FIND THE CHANGE. Insert the first difference (or change) column into your table of values.

Calculate the change in your term values when you go down your table. Include + (plus) if the numbers are increasing, - (minus) if the numbers are decreasing, and include the amount that the numbers are increasing or decreasing. Step 5:

FIND THE CONSTANT. Find the constant through the following calculation:

 o Constant = Term Value 1 – Change o Ex. Constant = Term Value 1 – Change = 2 – 1 = 1 o The Constant is 1.

Step 6:

SUMMARIZE YOUR FINDINGS. Write a quick sentence to describe what the change and the constant are.

o Ex. Change = +1. Constant = +1.

Step 7:

CREATE AN ALGEBRAIC EXPRESSION.

At this point, creating an algebraic expression is easy.

The general formula for an algebraic expression is “Change X Variable +/- Constant”

 o Ex. Change X Variable +/- Constant. § +1 X x + 1 § Since we often use x as our variable, we remove the multiplication sign. Any time a number is beside a variable it automatically means multiplication. § Also we remove the sign in front of our change if the change is positive. § Therefore, we are left with the following: 1x+1 o The Algebraic Expression is 1x+1.

Step 8:

CREATE AN ALGEBRAIC EQUATION. Set your algebraic expression equal to the variable y.

o Example: Algebraic Expression is 1x +1. So…

§ y = 1x + 1

Step 9:

 o y = 1x + 1 o y represents the total number of shapes. x represents the term number.

When given the pattern number (term

number), solve for the number of shapes (term value).

When given the number of shapes (term

value), solve for the pattern number (term number).

 o y = 1x + 1 o y = 1x + 1 o How many shapes will you need to make the 10 th pattern? o If you have 114 shapes, what pattern would you create? o y = 1x + 1, when x = 10. o y = 1x + 1, when y = 114. o = 1 (10) + 1 o 114 = 1x + 1 o = 10 + 1 o 114 – 1 = 1x + 1 – 1 o = 11 o 113 = 1x o You will need 11 shapes to make 1 1 the 10 th , pattern. o 113 = x or x = 113

o You can create the 113 TH pattern with 114 shapes. When solving these problems you must always remember ORDER OF OPERATIONS rules (bedmas), as well as the rules for solving algebra problems (opposite operations, on both sides).

Graphing Patterns

Step 1:

FIND A PATTERN. (from the text book, an assigned question, or create your own when studying).

Step 2:

Step 3:

CREATE A TABLE OF VALUES. Each picture in your pattern gives you two important pieces of information; the term number, and the term value.

Step 4:

o

o

o

Term Number – the number of the picture.

Term Value – the number of shapes in that term number. Ex.

Term

Number Value

Term

1

2

2

3

3

4

DRAW THE AXIS. Axis are a set of lines. The horizontal axis is labelled the x-axis, and the vertical axis is labelled the y-axis.

o

Ex. Step 5:

TITLE and LABEL THE SCALE FOR BOTH THE X AND Y AXIS. For our math unit,

the x-axis will ALWAYS be the Term Number (Independent Variable), and the y-axis will ALWAYS be the Term Value (Dependent Variable).

Your scale must include all of the data within the table of values as well extend further to allow for answer other questions about the pattern.

Avoid using the squilly line to show that you are skipping some data points. This only leads to errors.

Step 6:

o

Ex. PLOT THE DATA FROM YOUR TABLE OF VALUES ON THE GRAPH.

o

Ex. Step 7:

DRAW A LINE OF BEST FIT.

o

o

Draw a line that passes through all of the point on the graph and extend the line in both directions. Ex. Step 8:

USE THE GRAPH TO FIND THE OTHER INFORMATION. o
If asked to find how many tiles are needed to create the fifth pattern. (BLUE)
Draw a dotted line from Term Number 5, up to the line of best fit, and then over
to the Term Value.
o
If asked to find out what pattern can be created with 9 tiles. (Pink) Draw a dotted
line from Term Value 9, across to the line of best fit, and then down to the Term
Value.
§
Ex.