# Interview Lesson- Straight Line Graphs

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by roxtar, Feb 5, 2011.

1. ### roxtar

Hi,
I did post this on the jobseekers section, but may have more help here! I am a student teacher and have my first interview this week. Nervous, but excited at the same time. I have to teach straight line graphs to year 7, top set for 30 mins. I have taught the topic before, but am not sure where to pitch it.
Is it usual that the topic would be competely new to the class? Or would they have learnt this before and I am there to assess that and push their learning forward? I have a few ideas, but just do not know what to expect, as I said, this is my first interview.
Any help is much appreciated.
Louise
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2. ### roxtar

Hi,
I did post this on the jobseekers section, but may have more help here! I am a student teacher and have my first interview this week. Nervous, but excited at the same time. I have to teach straight line graphs to year 7, top set for 30 mins. I have taught the topic before, but am not sure where to pitch it.
Is it usual that the topic would be competely new to the class? Or would they have learnt this before and I am there to assess that and push their learning forward? I have a few ideas, but just do not know what to expect, as I said, this is my first interview.
Any help is much appreciated.
Louise
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3. ### DMNew commenter

Hi Louise.
Do you have any more information than that such as the ability of the students (I know you said top set but that could mean anything from level 4 to level 7 depending on the school) and what they already know? The topic of straight line graphs could also mean anything from drawing and reading a conversion graph to y = mx + c or direct proportion. Could you tell us exactly what you were told and what thoughts you have had so far?
DM

5. ### roxtar

Thank you for quick reply. The class are working at level 5/6 and the lesson should be on using coordinates generated from linear equations and plotted where x is given explicitly in terms of y.

I was thinking with 30 mins, a quick starter revising plotting coordinates, and then an example with questioning their understanding of substituting into 2x and 3x+5 etc. Model plotting and labelling. Some examples for them to have a go at independently and a plenary with some pair working.

6. ### DMNew commenter

If different students plot several or different graphs (you could issue preprinted scales and axes), the plenary could be "What is the same and different about the graphs?" leading to an informal discovery of gradient and intercept and possibly the fact that parallel lines have the same gradient.

7. ### SeptemberNew commenter

If you have a set of mini-whiteboards tthat you can borrow from a school with a grid on them get the student to do their graphs on the mini whiteboard.
It will show all class engagement and students respond well to them. Good for assessment. It should help you tick some boxes too.

8. ### DMNew commenter

If you do this check all the pens work first.

9. ### roxtar

Thank you for the help. Thought I was heading in the right direction, but just needed that nudge! Have sorted the lesson in my mind, and will plan an extension activity for the bright ones.  Now just to prepare for the interview!

Thanks again, Louise

10. ### DMNew commenter

Good luck Louise. Let us know how you get on.

11. ### rustybug

I had a similar brief for an interview last week - ratio and proportion to Y7, half an hour. The school is private, 100% selective, they say they are about 3 times oversubscribed, so I pitched it very high. Wow, did I get a shock. I found out just before the lesson that the class had a shaky grasp of equivalent fractions and there was I with my investigation on aspect ratio and enlargement of A paper! I assumed with all the fuss the school makes about high expectations that they'd want a teacher who has them.
Needless to say, I did not get the job. Possibly because I came out of the lesson saying how wrong I had been in my pitch level, not realising until later the heavy subtext: "My GOSH I'm so surprised to see how weak your students are!!" Also the job went to someone who chatted to the HoD at lunchtime about his girlfriend, who she knows.
Next time, I would play it very safe, and especially not plan too much - half an hour is a very tiny amount of time when you don't know their names and have to introduce yourself etc. Much better to be relaxed and let them see you questioning the students, I would say. Not that I'm the world expert!
Good luck!

12. ### rustybug

My mother-in-law used to say, when packing to go on holiday, put all the things you want to take on the bed. Then put half of it back in the cupboard.
I wish I'd done that with my interview lesson.
Just a thought.

13. ### roxtar

Thank you for the advice. I am concerned with 30 mins, which is really not long at all. I am sorry to hear about the job though. I think its difficult to go into a class you don't know and teach for half an hour. I also though about using graphic calculators, but haven't used them with a class before, which is not the best time for an interview! I am playing it safe, but hopefully showing my questioning and explaining skills, as well as assessment for learning.

14. ### weebecka

Hi lou447,
There are many ways of tackling this topic. I know from experience that it's really hard to predict what a school will be looking for. Do try and read the culture of the department and play to that if you can.
But in all this discussion there's a key awareness in equations of lines which seems to be missing which I want to draw your attention to.
Imagine a coodinate grid.
Imagine each point where the lines intersect is labelled with it's co-ordinates.
Each point has an x co-ordinate and a y-coordinate doesn't it.
Check the students know which is which.
I would start with a grid where some of the points are labelled and some aren't - let them fill in the missing numbers.
Now consider the rule y=2x. Can they find a pair of co-ordinates where that is true?
And another, and another?
Can they spot a pattern?
Can they find a point which fits the rule but doesn't fit the pattern?
Can they find a point which fits the pattern but doesn't fit the rule?
Can they write down a pair of co-ordinates which fits the rule which they think no-one else will choose? (just a quick challenge competition which brings in fractions and negative numbers - this could be a plenary).

Then I would give them more grids with a few pairs of co-ordinates labelled and ask them to explore other rules. I focus on equations like y = 3x being rules rather than equations of lines at this stage. Why should they be equations of lines? I think assuming that confuses things. It helps more to discover it.

dunno if that helps at all. I do this stuff with grids of chairs and kids moving around and I love it, but I think that's too much to take on at interview without having done it. But the mathematical thinking is the same.

Good luck with your interview lou446 whatever you do.

15. ### Returning

With regard to not knowing the kids. In my interview lesson and in tje first few weeks I got the children to write their names on mini white boards then asked them to lift the white board whenever they put their hand in the air. It does mean that you can use their names straight off wich sort of gives an illusion of a relationship.

16. ### weebecka

Fabulous, well done you. =D

17. ### anon261

Congratulations on getting the job!
All the very best for the future