Here is my first Scripting Algebra (SA) post! I hope to keep these coming (with about 5 posts for each semester of Algebra).
Often Algebra classes start with the Real Number System. This SA task is to program a graphic for the Real Number system. This can be a Venn diagram, animation, or another project that the learner comes up with.
I plan to use p5.js with my learners because it is fairly easy to learn, play with, and explore. I am not teaching a coding course; I am supplementing math learning with coding tasks and projects. (Codepen is another place to program with p5.js, but has ads.)
Here is the flow of my class:
- After the Real Number system and sets have been introduced, show an example of a p5.js code that creates a graphic. Learners can be given a copy of the script to play with and through inquiry figure out how it works. I will cover the coordinate system of the canvas, how to comment, RGB colors, and layers in p5.js.
- Next, learners can sketch and plan their ideas for a Real Number System graphic or animation and start to program it.
- Give them the p5.js reference, and answer questions as they come up to help them implement their sketch.
- Some learners may choose to modify the existing script and others may start from scratch.
Example Concepts: Coordinate planes, ordered pairs, layers as an analogy to Order of Operations, the Real Number System, triangles (or other shapes they choose), sets, unions, intersections, etc..
- Google has a RGB color picker if searched for on Google.
- Keep it simple – remind learners to start simple and then build on their ideas if they have time.
- Animation will take more time, so modify planning if an animation is chosen as a project. (Looping and conditions may need an introduction depending on learners’ ideas.)