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Data & Statistics



Number Sense


This site is still under construction. Please keep visiting to see the complete work. The completion date is June 30, 2000.

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STATE GOAL 8: Use algebraic and analytical methods to identify and describe patterns and relationships in data, solve problems and predict results. (Illinois Learning Standards)

Statement of Purpose about the Project and the Group

As the NCTM Principals and Standards document states, “students in the middle grades should learn algebra both as a set of competencies tied to the representation of quantitative relationships and as a style of mathematical thinking for formalizing patterns, functions, and generalizations.” (NCTM, p. 223). In this section we have tried to build on the notions of patterns and their expression both graphically and algebraically. We try to show the connections between algebra and geometry. We explore discrete data and graphing in the context of linear relationships.


The introduction of approriate tools at appropriate times (from computers to angle rulers) is an important part of exploring and developing mathematical understanding.

In this unit, we begin with polygons and interior angles. We explore the notion of patterns and relations and the use of variables to make these relationships clearer and to help us interpret information. Beginning with geometry is a deliberate effort to show that algebra and geometry are related.

Part 1

pp. 2-3

Part 2

pp. 4-9

Part 3


Part 4



Drawing a regular polygon

Tables, graphs, patterns and variables

Turning the problem around

Expanding and assessing


Try to draw a regular polygon

Make a table of angles and sides, draw a graph of discrete points, use variables

Predict the results with non-regular polygons, concave polygons, find the sides given the angle

Find the number of diagonals in a polygon.

The swimming pool.


Create the figures and make attempts at the more difficult polygons

Create the graphs, tables, and formulae

Analyze the predictions, produce figures

Produce a problem that illustrates the need for analyzing patterns and using variables



Instructors' page Participant page Important URL's Support for the material Contact information Glossary

C.2000, Supported by a grant from the Illinois State Board of Education