Conic Sections Explorer

This is an activity developed by NCTM that I used to introduce this chapter.  It gives students a way of visualizing slicing a three dimensional object.  They are able to manipulate the slope and intercept of the plane and see what slopes will create what kind of shape.  I found this activity and an accompanying worksheet at the website http://illuminations.nctm.org/ActivityDetail.aspx?ID=195.  I modified the worksheet slightly to meet the needs of my students. 

Exploring Conic Sections with the Geometer’s Sketchpad

This book contains hands on activities along with GSP files to accompany the activities.  I chose to use part of the activity on parabolas with my class to help them make sense of the definition.  Only the patty paper portion of the activity was used and I created a different second half of the activity. 

Discovering Advanced Algebra Textbook

I pulled the hyperbola activity from this textbook and modified it slightly.  This book has many technology-based activities that can help students understand real world applications of mathematical concepts.  I think it is very important for students to understand how what they are learning applies to life outside the classroom. 

Michigan Department of Education State Standards

These helped me align my teaching with what will be on state tests and what students are expected to know. 

Prentice Hall Algebra 2 Textbook

This is the textbook that the students have in their possession and that I used for homework and general classroom reference.  It also has variety of examples that students can reference at home if they are stuck.