These two modules consist of writing assignments that were used in a Learning
Community course, Algebra the Write Way, in which we integrated two collegeprep
courses, Elementary Algebra and Intro to Essay Writing. The integration occurred
by using mathematics and quantitative reasoning as the subject of the English
course's readings and writings and by using writing to support and reinforce
the mathematical concepts. The instructors of the course also used writing to
try to reduce the anxiety about learning mathematics. According to Preis &
Biggs (2001), instructors can help reduce math anxiety by emphasizing that learning
mathematics is partially like learning a foreign language, with its own vocabulary
and symbols.
This curriculum falls naturally into two parts. The activities provided in both
modules were used together in the learning community course. However, the modules
can be used separately; module 1 can be used alone in a writing course to integrate
mathematics/quantitative reasoning, and module 2 can be used alone to integrate
writing in an algebra course. These modules could be used in high school (grades
1012) or in introductory college classes. However, the writing assignments could
be adapted for more advanced students.
The mathematics content of these modules is elementary algebra and statistics.
Module 1 requires only basic descriptive statistics and module 2 corresponds with
high school or elementary Algebra. Although these modules were created for students
in a college Elementary Algebra, they could be modified to incorporate more sophisticated
mathematics.
Algebra the Write Way: Integrating Math into Writing
