More than anything, use FastFig to make your math documents and worksheets more fun. For example, try embedding a YouTube clip of Van Halen’s music video "Runaround" -- ask kids which Van Halen brother has greater angular or linear velocity. Or, ask kids to predict whether or not Evel Knievel can jump the Grand Canyon, and follow up with a video of the actual event.
Keep in mind that FastFig auto-solves equations for users -- to stop this, just press the Shift and Enter keys together. However, leaving this feature on is great when creating notes or answer keys. Because both Common Core and IB Math require students to write about math, introduce FastFig as a way to write papers and create reports with graphs, images, and equations, and even videos. Just be sure that your students have already demonstrated an ability to solve the problems themselves. Otherwise, FastFig can do some of the work for them.Continue reading Show less
FastFig is a free tool that lets teachers create and share interactive math documents. Beyond the ability to embed multimedia elements in documents, the tool converts standard keystrokes into mathematical symbols. Physics, chemistry, and math teachers can all use the tool for typing notes, assessments, or any other document that uses equations.
Once documents are created, FastFig generates a link that teachers can include in an email, or post to a class website. Students can also use FastFig when writing about math, since it allows a seamless back-and-forth between text and equations.
In terms of creating standard mathematical documents and worksheets, FastFig is a notch better than the equation editors that come with most word processing programs. Teachers can choose to memorize certain keystrokes, or they can use a color-coded keyboard on the screen to enter symbols. It may take a while to get used to some of the program's nuances -- for instance, remembering to press Shift+Enter to stop the program from automatically solving equations.
It's the extras, however, that really make FastFig stand out. This site fluidly publishes math documents online, making it a must-have for blended or online instruction. Also, FastFig makes it easier to create multimedia documents with embedded graphs, images, or videos. This can help teachers and students demonstrate that text, equations, and graphs can all be different representatives of the same mathematical concept. Writing about math makes students' thoughts visible, and FastFig is a powerful way for kids to explain what they know. Kids can use the tool to not only perform math skills but also defend their understanding, as promoted by the Common Core State Standards.
Key Standards Supported
Arithmetic With Polynomials And Rational Expressions
Rewrite simple rational expressions in different forms; write a(x)/b(x) in the form q(x) + r(x)/b(x), where a(x), b(x), q(x), and r(x) are polynomials with the degree of r(x) less than the degree of b(x), using inspection, long division, or, for the more complicated examples, a computer algebra system.
Write a function that describes a relationship between two quantities.
(+) Compose functions. For example, if T(y) is the temperature in the atmosphere as a function of height, and h(t) is the height of a weather balloon as a function of time, then T(h(t)) is the temperature at the location of the weather balloon as a function of time.
Create equations and inequalities in one variable and use them to solve problems. Include equations arising from linear and quadratic functions, and simple rational and exponential functions.
Linear, Quadratic, And Exponential Models
Construct linear and exponential functions, including arithmetic and geometric sequences, given a graph, a description of a relationship, or two input-output pairs (include reading these from a table).
Reasoning With Equations And Inequalities
Explain each step in solving a simple equation as following from the equality of numbers asserted at the previous step, starting from the assumption that the original equation has a solution. Construct a viable argument to justify a solution method.
Solve simple rational and radical equations in one variable, and give examples showing how extraneous solutions may arise.
Key Standards Supported
Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity
Apply concepts of statistics and probability to support explanations that organisms with an advantageous heritable trait tend to increase in proportion to organisms lacking this trait.
Use mathematical representations to support explanations of how natural selection may lead to increases and decreases of specific traits in populations over time.
Earth’s Place in the Universe
Use mathematical or computational representations to predict the motion of orbiting objects in the solar system.
Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics
Use mathematical and/or computational representations to support explanations of factors that affect carrying capacity of ecosystems at different scales.
Use mathematical representations to support and revise explanations based on evidence about factors affecting biodiversity and populations in ecosystems of different scales.
Use mathematical representations to support claims for the cycling of matter and flow of energy among organisms in an ecosystem.
Matter and Its Interactions
Use mathematical representations to support the claim that atoms, and therefore mass, are conserved during a chemical reaction.
Motion and Stability: Forces and Interactions
Use mathematical representations to support the claim that the total momentum of a system of objects is conserved when there is no net force on the system.
Use mathematical representations of Newton’s Law of Gravitation and Coulomb’s Law to describe and predict the gravitational and electrostatic forces between objects.
Waves and Their Applications in Technologies for Information Transfer
Use mathematical representations to support a claim regarding relationships among the frequency, wavelength, and speed of waves traveling in various media.
Use mathematical representations to describe a simple model for waves that includes how the amplitude of a wave is related to the energy in a wave.