Grades: 4‒7

Students are given a random value between 1 and 63 on one side of a scale and must balance it by selecting variables whose assigned values are powers of 2 (1, 2, 4, 8, 16, and 32). Students write equations to represent their model and then make conjectures about the properties of powers of 2 based on their observations.

OBJECTIVES

- Students will use a balance model to explore early algebraic concepts.
- Given a set of possible addends, students will select numbers whose sum equals a given target value.
- Students will develop strategies for finding combinations of addends that equal a target sum.
- Students will pose questions and make observations and conjectures about using the powers of 2 to make sums.

COMMON CORE CONNECTIONS

Mathematical Practices

(1) Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them; (2) Reason abstractly and quantitatively; (3) Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others; (5) Use appropriate tools strategically; (7) Look for and make use of structure.

Content Standards

6.EE2, 6

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