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Inter-disciplinary Exploration of Order: Looking Through the Commutative Property Lens

The function of secondary school is to nurture the minds of adolescents, and educators aim to prepare youth for success in the future. One means to attain these goals is to provide students with an array of knowledge. However, the educational system cultivates a misleading sense of compartmentalization of subject areas. From the roster of separate courses to standardarized tests separated into content-based sections, students are raised in a learning environment that segregates material. By contrast, the integration of mathematics, science, literature, and other disciplines dominate the “real world”. The audience for this curriculum unit is primarily 9th grade students in my Algebra 1 classroom, a vocational high school in inner city Philadelphia. Additionally, the intention of the series of lessons is to lessen the isolation between subjects and develop critical thinking skills and a love for learning and inquiry through problem solving. The curriculum’s structure is seven segments: overview, rationale, mathematical background, strategies, classroom activities, annotated bibliography/resources, and appendix.

Nicole Padula
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