How 4MAT is Used to Revolutionize the Teaching of Algebra

Developed by Algebra Teachers for Algebra Teachers

The 4MAT for Algebra Teaching Method was developed by master math teachers who have also developed mastery in the 4MAT teaching method.

Designed to Enhance Existing Text

The 4MAT for Algebra Teaching Method is designed as a supplement to existing text. Throughout the program, instructions are provided for integrating text resources  with the units.

Making Connections to the Real World

Each unit plan is taught over a 2-3 week timeframe. Each unit connects to the real lives, interests and experiences of students. And each unit also provides actionable ways for students to make learning their own through individual applications and extensions of knowledge. Students learn best when they explore the significance of key ideas and integrate learning in their own unique ways and this course is organized around these key principles.

Based on Ten Overarching Concepts

The programs breaks Algebra I down to ten fundamental concepts:  Communication, Luck, Balance, Linear Relationships, Comparisons, Alternatives, Growth, Quadratic Relationships, Patterns, Modeling.

These concepts pull together a host of disparate facts into a cohesive whole. They help students see the forest from the trees.

Communication

Essential Question: In what ways can a person “communicate” more effectively using Algebra?

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Topics Covered

  • Percents
  • Variables in Algebra
  • Exponents and powers
  • Order of operations
  • Equations and inequalities (introductory)
  • Tables and graphs
  • An introduction to functions
  • The real number line
  • Addition of real numbers
  • Adding and subtracting matrices
  • Multiplication of real numbers
  • The distributive property
  • Division of real numbers
  • Statistics
  • Measures of central tendencies
  • Range
  • Stem and leaf plots
  • Frequency
  • Histogram
  • Box-and-Whisker plot
  • Quartiles, Outliers
  • Sample
  • Survey
  • Population
  • Types of sampling
  • Biased sample,
  • Biased question
 

Alternatives

Essential Question: Why are alternatives important when solving systems?

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Topics covered:

  • Solving linear systems by graphing
  • Solving linear systems by substitution
  • Solving linear systems by linear combination
  • Applications of linear systems
  • Special types of linear systems (Lines intersect - one solution
  • Lines are parallel - no solution
  • Lines coincide - infinitely many solutions)
  • Solving systems of linear inequalities
 

Comparisons

Essential Question: How are comparisons in our lives and comparisons in mathematics related?

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Topics covered:

  • Solving one-step linear inequalities
  • Solving multi-step linear inequalities
  • Solving compound inequalities
  • Solving absolute value equations and inequalities
  • Graphing linear inequalities in two variables
 

Modeling

Essential Question: How do we model situations in the real world?

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Topics covered:

  • Simplifying rational expressions
  • Multiplying and dividing rational expressions
  • Adding and subtracting rational expressions
  • Dividing polynomials
  • Rational equations and functions
  • Functions involving square roots
  • Operations with radical expressions
  • Solving radical equations
  • Completing the square
  • Pythagorean theorem
  • Distance and midpoint
  • Trigonometic ratios
 

Patterns

Essential Question: How can patterns simplify polynomial functions?

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Topics covered:

  • Adding/subtracting polynomials
  • Multiplying polynomials
  • Special products of polynomials
  • Solving polynomial equations in factored form
  • Factoring
  • Ratio/proportion
  • Direct/inverse variation
 

Relationships, Quadratic

Essential Question: In what ways may a person model situations using quadratics?

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Topics covered:

  • Solving quadratic equations by finding square roots
  • Simplifying radicals
  • Graphing quadratic functions
  • Solving quadratic equations by graphing
  • Solving quadratic equations by quadratic formula
  • Applications of the discriminant
  • Graphing quadratic inequalities
  • Comparing linear, exponential and quadratic models
 

Growth

Essential Question: How does exponential growth happen?

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Topics covered:

  • Multiplication properties of exponents
  • Zero and negative exponents
  • Division properties of exponents
  • Scientific notation
  • Exponential growth functions
  • Exponential decay functions
 

Relationships, Linear

Essential Question: How can you recognize linear relationships?

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Topics covered:
  • Coordinates/scatterplots
  • Graph using tables
  • Graph using intercepts
  • Graph using slopes
  • Finding a slope given two points
  • Direct variation
  • Graphing linear functions
  • Writing equations in y=mx+b form
  • Writing equations given slope and a point
  • Writing equations given two points
  • Fitting a line to data
  • Point-Slope form of a linear equation
  • Standard form of a linear equation
  • Predicting with linear models
 

Balance

Essential Question: In what ways can balance be used to solve real world situations?

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Topics Covered

  • One step equations
  • Multi-step equations
  • Equations with variables on both sides
  • Solving decimal equations
  • Formulas and functions
  • Applications
  • Solving equations involving Geometry
  • Area
  • Perimeter
  • Complementary/supplementary angles
  • Triangle sum
  • Polygon sum
 

Luck

Essential Question: In what ways does chance show up in the real world?

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Topics covered:

  • Experimental
  • Theoretical
  • Counting principal
  • Compound events
  • Combinations
  • Permutations
  • Mutually exclusive events
  • Overlapping events
  • Independent events
  • Dependent events
 


Download a Sample Chapter

Click here to download or receive by mail a sample chapter from the teacher's guide. The concept is "Luck".

4MAT 4 Algebra Works!

4MAT 4 Algebra Training Dates

4MAT 4 Algebra training training is for teachers looking to use this program in their classroom. The training provides comprehensive guidance in how to use 4MAT 4 Algebra to help enhance Algebra I Instruction. This training includes 2 days of intensive instruction on how to use this program in the classroom. 

Participants will receive hands-on guidance in all the instructional activities and projects comprising the course. Upon completion, participants are fully equipped to implement this program in their classroom.

Watch for future 4MAT 4 Algebra workshops to be scheduled. 

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