Category Archives: Introduction to College Algebra

InCA Assignment for 1/15

We will have a pairs quiz in class Thursday, January 16 (i.e., tomorrow). It will include content on everything we have done so far. You will be assigned pairs at the start of class and be given the whole period to work. Fair warning: You will NOT be permitted a graphing calculator during this test.

Today, you should review. There are several links below to work on, but in class you’ll be given instructions to complete at least one IXL module to a score of 80+.

New instructions to log in to IXL

  • Go to http://www.clever.com and click “Log in as a student”
  • Search for Ithaca High School (if necessary) and select “Log in With Google”
  • The system will connect to your ICSD Google account and you’ll be taken to a “homeroom” page. From there, you can click the IXL icon to log in.

Once you are logged in, complete one of the following to a score of 80+

There are others linked below, but you are expected to complete one of these three.

Additional Review Resources

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 1/14

There will be a quiz on Thursday, January 16 on what we’ve done so far in Unit 4, including evaluating/simplifying expressions with radicals and rational powers.

Period 3

We spent some more time with “nth” roots (the general term for any radical: square root, cube root, fourth root, etc. We observed that evaluating an expression with a radical is similar to but subtly different from solving an equation with a power. See the notes for more details.

Today’s Files

Cumulative IXL Modules


Period 8

We played a review relay race game to quickly recap the work we’ve done so far in this class. Tomorrow, you’ll have some time to work on the review sheet posted below as well as to do some IXL work.

Today’s Files

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 1/13, plus Quiz Warning

My two periods are still not quite in sync with each other, so check for your period below. Both periods will have a quiz on the unit so far on Thursday, January 16

3rd Period

We finished the lesson started Friday about simplifying radical expressions

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules


8th Period

We spent some more time with “nth” roots (the general term for any radical: square root, cube root, fourth root, etc. We observed that evaluating an expression with a radical is similar to but subtly different from solving an equation with a power. See the notes for more details.

Today’s Files

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 1/10

All InCA students will have a Homework Quiz on Monday of the following assignments (these assignments came out in different orders for different periods, but the numbering is the same):

  • HW 4.2 – Evaluating Rational Powers
  • HW 4.3 – Multiplying/Dividing Radicals
  • HW 4.4 – Simplifying Radical Expressions with Rational Roots

Review the homework keys and videos for the past few days to prepare!

3rd and 8th periods did different things today (you’ll be aligned again come Monday)

3rd Period

We returned to our work with fractional exponents and used them to simplify radical expressions

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules


8th Period

Rational exponents are equivalent to radicals, therefore the shortcuts that we can use working with exponents extend to radicals as well. Today we discussed multiplying and dividing radical expressions.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 1/9

3rd and 8th periods did different things today:

3rd period students

We spent some time noticing some things about the powers reference list you’ve created. Many powers evaluate to the same thing (2^6, 4^3, and 8^2 for example, as do 3^4 and 9^2) and you were challenged to come up with why. After that, we played a competitive game where you tried to find as many different ways of expressing the number 256 using multiplication and exponents.

Your homework tonight is to repeat the game with the number 32. A reminder of the rules:

  • The only operations allowed are exponents and multiplication
  • Each term of your expression must have an exponent
  • You may have at most one exponent = 1

8th period students

We returned to our work with fractional exponents and used them to simplify radical expressions

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 1/8

Rational exponents are equivalent to radicals, therefore the shortcuts that we can use working with exponents extend to radicals as well. Today we discussed multiplying and dividing radical expressions.

A reminder: because I want you to be able to work through this chapter without relying on the calculator, we will have a daily Powers Quiz. I will choose 10 powers from the reference table you made and ask you to evaluate them without using the calculator in a brief, timed quiz. We will do this every day through the unit, and only  your highest grade on any one quiz will be the one used in your Unit 4 grade.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 1/7

More work with rational exponents today, including evaluating expressions that include them.

A reminder: because I want you to be able to work through this chapter without relying on the calculator, we will have a daily Powers Quiz. I will choose 10 powers from the reference table you made and ask you to evaluate them without using the calculator in a brief, timed quiz. We will do this every day through the unit, and only  your highest grade on any one quiz will be the one used in your Unit 4 grade.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 1/6

We’ve started a new unit, this one on rules of exponents. Today was a review of pre-existing shortcuts, along with an introduction of some new ones.

Finally, because I want you to be able to work through this chapter without relying on the calculator, we will have a daily Powers Quiz. I will choose 10 powers from the powers reference sheet you make in today’s homework. I will ask you to evaluate them without using the calculator in a brief, timed quiz. We will do this every day through the rest of the unit, and only your highest grade on any one quiz will be the one used in your Unit 5 grade.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

What’s Going On in This Graph? (January 8th)

Visit this page on the New York Times and look at the graph showing the reading level and time (in minutes) required to read internet privacy policies for 150 popular websites and apps plus a few books. The graph was taken from elsewhere on the New York Times’s website.

As you look at the graph, consider the following three questions

  • What do you notice? If you make a claim, tell us what you noticed that supports your claim.

  • What do you wonder? What are you curious about that comes from what you notice in the graph?

  • What’s going on in this graph? Write a catchy headline that captures the graph’s main idea.

Write your thoughts as a comment on the New York Times’s page. Respond to others’ comments if you wish. Visit again on Wednesday for a moderated discussion by representatives from the American Statistical Association, who will reply to as many comments as they can.

By Friday, the NYT will link to the article the graph is from and provide additional information and context. Check how your headline compared!

InCA Assignment for 12/18

You Unit 3 Test is tomorrow. Review your notes and the lesson videos posted below for reminders on the various topics we covered in class. Complete the final review sheet and check your answers in the links below (and be sure to check out the answer videos!). Also, there are plenty of IXL review modules that you can access as well. Work hard to review, and you’ll kill it tomorrow! Remember: “Math Ability” isn’t about smarts; it’s about work!

Note about IXL: Your login has changed. Now, you should head to http://www.clever.com, click “Log in as a Student” and sign in to your ICSD Google account. From there, hit the IXL button and you’ll be logged into your IXL account and can access the links below.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 12/17

You Unit 3 Test is on Thursday, December 19 and tomorrow (the 18th), we’ll have our third HW quiz covering HW 3.14 and 3.15

In class today, you got a study guide that we started to complete together. You should work on finishing that for tomorrow and come in with questions!

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 12/16

The last bit of new material for this unit reverses the solving-by-factoring process we have been using for quadratic equations, recreating the equation that has the given roots.

This last item, including everything else from this unit, will appear on the Unit 3 test on Thursday, December 19

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 12/13

Check out The Reveal for the New York Times’s graph we looked at this week. Also take a look at the comments, especially the shout-outs that students got for their catchy headlines. Next week, that could be you!


The third method of solving quadratics is to simply use the square root, but there’s a danger here: you still have two solutions. The + is built into the quadratic formula, but it still needs to be added here. And that falls to you, the solver!

Today’s lesson also included a brief revisit to word problems, this time resulting in a quadratic equation.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 12/12

We had a homework quiz followed by a mastery quiz in class today. Your homework if to finish the mastery quiz if you did not complete it in class.

Video Archive

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 12/11

We did some more practice with solving quadratic equations today with a game of Trashketball.

Note: Tomorrow, we will have a HW quiz referring to assignments 3.9, 3.10, 3.11, and 3.12. We will also have a Mastery Quiz on solving quadratic equations.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 12/10

We didn’t actually finish our lesson yesterday, so today’s HW is the same as yesterday’s. We did some more work with the quadratic formula today, specifically with simplifying the radical expressions we sometimes get when we apply it.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules

InCA Assignment for 12/9

Each week, starting today, we will be participating in the New York Times’s What’s Going On in This Graph activity. Click the link to see today’s graph, and go to Desmos to enter some of your thoughts.


We did some more work with the quadratic formula today, specifically with simplifying the radical expressions we sometimes get when we apply it.

Today’s Links

Cumulative IXL Modules