## Exploring the Unknown: Writing and Solving Equations

Students develop methods for writing and solving equations and manipulating
algebraic expressions using the hands-on equipment “Algebra Lab Gear.”
Students are first introduced to Lab Gear as a tool for modeling and understanding
algebraic ideas. They then learn different ways to model, combine and simplify
various algebraic expressions using Lab Gear. Finally, they develop Lab Gear
rules for solving equations. Eventually, most students wean themselves from
Lab Gear and work strictly symbolically.

### NCTM standard: Algebra

- Understand patterns, relations, and functions
- Represent and analyze mathematical situations and structures using algebraic
symbols
- Use mathematical models to represent and understand quantitative relationships
- Analyze change in various contexts

### Primary Mathematical Goals

- Write linear equations and inequalities from given information
- Write equations in the form
*y = mx +b*
- Understand the relationship between a linear equation and its graph, including
the concepts of slope and y-intercept
- Solve linear equations and inequalities