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Kelly Schimmel

Comprehensive Unit Plan


Everything Equations and Inequalities

Time frame: 13 days
6th grade Mathematics


(1a.2) (3c.1) (3c.2) (4a.1)

Key Issues:
Western Alamance Middle School is located in Burlington, North Carolina and part of the Alamance
Burlington School district. It is comprised of approximately 900 students in grades 6-8. There are about
55 teachers at Western Middle School, of which 98% are licensed and 51% have taught for 10 or more
years. This creates about a 16 to 1 student teacher ratio. It is not a charter school, a magnet school, or
a Title 1 school. However, there are about 250 students who are eligible for free lunch and about 40
students who are eligible for reduced-price lunch. The student body of the school is around 49% male
and 51% female. The schools diversity score is .41, calculated from populations of 1% Asian, 10%
Hispanic, 10% African American, 76% Caucasian, and 3% students of two or more races. There are
about 275 students that comprise the sixth grade. The average sixth grade class size is 26 students.
The classroom itself is identified as regularly tracked students. There are 13 boys and 15 girls in the
class. The racial diversity does not reflect the schools population because there are 21 white students,
5 African American students, and 2 Hispanic students. There are no students in this class with IEPS or
504s, but there are students on Tier 2 for RTI. In order to reach all 30 students, it is important to ensure
that my lesson covers a variety of activities, assignments, and assessments to provide students many
opportunities to show what they have learned. I will rely on a range of tools to accomplish this,
including: the SmartBoard, the document camera, white boards, activities, worksheets, textbook
problems, workbook problems, real-world examples, and warm-ups.
Students have an expectation to immediately achieve mastery. Many of these students are very
accustomed to getting correct answers and they are uncomfortable with confusion and failure. In
connection with this, students are not trained to show their work. They believe that simply writing the
correct answer is sufficient, but do not show their steps or thinking to arrive at the answer. I have often
noticed correct solutions without any work shown. They are eager to learn. These students are very
well behaved, engaged students that demonstrate a great deal of effort. They participate by asking
questions that display a level of high cognitive demand.
Unifying Concepts (Big Idea):
This unit extends from previous lessons that focused on properties of algebra. Students just completed
a unit on combining like terms, substitution, and distribution. Students will learn to solve one-step
equations and inequalities with inverse operations. They will understand why these operations are
necessary in the real world. The big idea is that inverse operations can solve to find an unknown value.
Western Alamance Middle Schools curriculum is guided by the district and state standards. It follows
the North Carolina Common Core. The reasons for unifying concepts, overall generalization, and
specific skills are to meet the requirements implemented by the state. This unit provides basic
algebraic knowledge about solving equations and inequalities that students will need to advance in
higher-level mathematics courses. Students will extend their knowledge of this unit to the application
of real world situations that will advance their mathematical reasoning. The 21 st century skills and
differentiation efforts allow students to practice their problem solving, perseverance, abstract
reasoning, quantitative reasoning, modeling, and strategic tool usage.
Interdisciplinary Connections:
This unit will provide students an opportunity to practice their literacy, communication, and
organization skills. These are crucial skills that apply to all disciplines. The large amount of word
problem practice will require students to critically read, discerning what information is necessary to
complete the problem. As students work through these operational problems, there is a great deal of
arithmetic. They must have clear, organized work that illustrates all their steps and thinking.
Organization of thinking is key. Students will also practice communicating their ideas to partners and
the whole class. For example, students will be put in pairs with a whiteboard to practice solving onestep equations. One partner will hold the marker, but will not speak. Their partner will dictate the

steps, but will not write. This is an exercise of communication that will help students build teamwork.
They also will practice flexible thinking throughout this exercise if their partner explained it in a way
that was different than they expected. The ability to learn in different ways and follow a peers train of
thought is valuable across disciplines. These communication tasks help hone the students explanation
Global Awareness:
A major theme of this unit is real-world application. Through a variety of discussions about why when
we solve equations and inequalities in the real world, students are exposed to examples in everyday
life. For example, students are given a word problem about comparing the number of languages in
different countries. Bringing in global statistics allows students to broaden their knowledge beyond the
United States.
Technology Integration:
There will be a large reliance on the SmartBoard and document camera for this unit. Interactive
SmartBoard lessons will require student participation. Lessons will be posted on the teacher webpage
for student access.


6.EE.5. Understand solving an equation or inequality as a process of answering a

question: which values from a specified set, if any, make the equation or inequality
true? Use substitution to determine whether a given number in a specified set
makes an equation or inequality true.
6.EE.6. Use variables to represent numbers and write expressions when solving a
real-world or mathematical problem; understand that a variable can represent an
unknown number, or, depending on the purpose at hand, any number in a specified
6.EE.7. Solve real-world and mathematical problems by writing and solving
equations of the from x + p = q and px = q for cases in which p,q, and x are all
nonnegative rational numbers.
6.EE.8. Write an inequality of the form x > c or x < c to represent a constraint or
condition in a real-world or mathematical problem. Recognize that inequalities of
the form x > c or x < c have infinitely any solutions; represent solutions of such
inequalities on number line diagrams.
Essential Understanding (big idea of unit)
(3c.2) (3d.1)
Solving equations, translating equations, graphing inequalities, and solving inequalities are essential
for students to build upon many other skills in Algebra and beyond. Fluently computing these problems
allows students to progress with content such as linear expressions, trigonometry, calculus, etc.
Comprehending the meaning of these operations beyond a mechanical process helps students
understand the nature of numbers and their interactions with each other. It introduces them to basic
number theory. Numerical and algebraic expressions can be compared using greater than, less than, or
equal. A given equation can be represented in an infinite number of different ways that have the same
solution (e.g., 3x 5 = 16 and 3x = 21 are equivalent equations; they have the same solution, 7),
Apart from equations and inequalities extending into so much other math content, this unit is an
integral part of the world around us. Students, consciously or subconsciously, encounter equations and
inequalities on a daily basis. Speed limits, credit cards, text messaging rates, and travel expense are a
few examples that demonstrate why learning this unit is useful. It extends outside of the classroom. It
is not enough to be able to use a calculator to compute these operations because this does not

demonstrate that students comprehend the meaning of their answer. Mathematical computations are
of growing importance in our society and students must be confident understanding equations and

Essential Questions:
What is the difference between an expression and an equation?

Why do we use equations to solve problems?

How is thinking algebraically different from thinking arithmetically?
How can we isolate the variable?
Why do you add or subtract from both sides of an equation?
Why do you multiply or divide to both sides of an equation?
Why do we perform the inverse operation?
What key vocabulary is needed to translate the equation from a sentence?
How do we represent a number?
What are inequalities and how can I use them in real-world situations?
What is the difference between solving equations and solving inequalities?
How do I solve for a variable in an inequality?
How can I use a number line to represent solutions for an inequality?

Knowledge (content)

(3c.1) (3d.1)


Knowledge, Skills, and Dispositions

Inverse Operations
Translating Equations
vocabulary (Sum,
terms, product, factor,
quotient, coefficient,
twice, less than)
Great than, Less than,
Greater than or Equal
to, Less than or Equal
Number lines

Lesson Plan Objectives

(4e.1) (4f.1) (5c.1)

Understand the
difference between an
equation and an
Solve one-step
equations for an
unknown variable
Substitute an answer
back into an equation
to check work
Translate a sentence
into an equation
Translate an equation
into a sentence
Solve real-life word
problems on
equations and
Graph inequalities on
a number line
Solve one-step

Dispositions (attitudes,

Students will appreciate

the value of the process.
Valuing contributions of
Students will learn how
to communicate with
their peers effectively

(4c.1) (4d.1)

Students will solve one step equations using addition and subtraction.
Students will substitute the value back into the equation to make the equation true (check their answer).
Students will solve one step equations using multiplication and division.
Students will translate sentences into equations and solve the equation.
Students will translate equations into a sentence.
Students will graph inequalities with positive and negative numbers.
Students will recognize the difference between inequalities and equations.
Students will solve one-step inequalities with addition and subtractions.
Students will check their solutions to inequalities with an appropriate number and graph their solution.
Students will solve one-step inequalities with multiplication and division.

Attach all lesson plans



(2d.1) (4a.2) (4b.1)

This unit covers a variety of learning tasks that gives ample opportunities for students to demonstrate
what they have learned. In a classroom of diverse learners, all students can participate in meaningful
I will implement various accommodations to meet the needs of all students. I will incorporate
SmartBoard lessons, worksheets, hands-on activities, videos, whiteboards, document cameras,
manipulatives, guided notes, and homework assignments into the learning process. Through all these
different styles, students should resonate with at least one of the experiences. I will challenge the
advanced students by asking questions of high-cognitive demand. I will repeat key ideas and questions
to emphasize their importance. All notes will be documented in a Smart Notebook file. This can be
shared onto the teachers webpage to allow students with short attention pans or difficulties to review
at their own pace later on.
Additionally, I will collaborate with my cooperating teacher and the inclusion teacher on the team to
brainstorm strategies to differentiate inside the classroom. For example, calculators will be allowed to
compute numbers because it is the process that is most important in this unit.

Formative assessments of lesson plan objectives are included on Form 1; summative
assessment of the unit goal(s) are included on Form 2.