Piecewise Functions: Algebra

Greetings, today’s post is for those in need of a piecewise functions review!  This will cover how to graph each part of that oh so intimidating piecewise functions.  There’s x’s, there are commas, there are inequalities, oh my! We’ll figure out what’s going on here and graph each part of the piecewise-function one step at a time.  Then check yourself with the practice questions at the end of this post. Happy calculating! 🙂

piecewise functions

What are Piece-Wise Functions?

Exactly what they sound like! A function that has multiple pieces or parts of a function.  Notice our function below has different pieces/parts to it.  There are different lines within, each with their own domain.

Now let’s look again at how to solve our example, solving step by step:

piecewise functions example
Screen Shot 2020-07-21 at 10.02.41 AM
piecewise functions

Translation: We are going to graph the line f(x)=x+1 for the domain where x > 0

To make sure all our x-values are greater than or equal to zero, we create a table plugging in x-values greater than or equal to zero into the first part of our function, x+1.  Then plot the coordinate points x and y on our graph.

Screen Shot 2020-07-21 at 10.04.33 AM
Screen Shot 2020-07-21 at 10.05.00 AM.png
Screen Shot 2020-07-21 at 10.06.46 AM

Translation: We are going to graph the line  f(x)=x-3 for the domain where x < 0.

To make sure all our x-values are less than zero, let’s create a table plugging in negative x-values values leading up to zero into the second part of our function, x-3.  Then plot the coordinate points x and y on our graph.

piecewise functions
Screen Shot 2020-07-21 at 10.07.57 AM

Ready to try the practice problems below on your own!?

Practice Questions:

Graph each piecewise function:

piecewise functions examples

Solutions:

piecewise functions examples
piecewise functions examples

Still got questions?  No problem! Check out the video above or comment below for any questions. Happy calculating! 🙂

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***Bonus! Want to test yourself with a similar NYS Regents question on piecewise functions?  Click here.

Absolute Value Equations: Algebra

Happy Wednesday math friends! Today, we’re going to go over how to solve absolute value equations.  Solving for absolute value equations supplies us with the magic of two potential answers since absolute value is measured by the distance from zero.  And if this sounds confusing, fear not, because everything is explained below!

Also, if you have any questions about anything here, don’t hesitate to comment. Happy calculating! 🙂

Absolute Value measures the “absolute value” or absolute distance from zero.  For example, the absolute value of 4 is 4 and the absolute value of -4 is also 4.  Take a look at the number line below for a clearer picture:

Absolute Value

Now let’s see how we can apply our knowledge of absolute value equations when there is a missing variable!Absolute Value Equations exampleScreen Shot 2020-07-08 at 2.03.46 PM.pngAbsolute Value EquationsScreen Shot 2020-07-08 at 2.04.26 PM.pngAbsolute Value Equations

Screen Shot 2020-07-08 at 2.05.17 PM.png

Absolute Value EquationsNow let’s look at a slightly different example:

Absolute Value Equations exampleScreen Shot 2020-07-08 at 2.07.59 PM

Absolute Value Equations

Screen Shot 2020-07-08 at 2.08.26 PM.png

Absolute Value Equations

Screen Shot 2020-07-08 at 2.09.33 PMAbsolute Value Equations Screen Shot 2020-07-08 at 2.10.39 PM.pngAbsolute Value Equations

Practice Questions: Given the following right triangles, find the missing lengths and side angles rounding to the nearest whole number.

Absolute Value Equations examples

Solutions:

Absolute Value Equations solutions

Still got questions?  No problem! Check out the video the same examples outlined above. Happy calculating! 🙂

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Also, if you’re looking for a review on combining like terms and the distributive property, check out this post here.

How to Graph Equation of a Line, y=mx+b: Algebra

Hi everyone, welcome back to Mathsux! This week we’ll be reviewing how to graph an equation of a line in y=mx+b form. And if you have not checked out the video below, please do! Happy calculating! 🙂

how to graph y=mx+b

An equation of a line can be represented by the following formula:

y=mx+b

Y-Intercept: This is represented by b, the stand-alone number in y=mx+b. This represents where the line hits the y-axis.  This is always the first point you want to start with when graphing at coordinate point (0,b).

Slope: This is represented by m, the number next to x in y=mx+b. Slope tells us how much we go up or down the y-axis and left or right on the x- axis in fraction form:

how to graph equation of a line

Now let’s check out an Example!

Graph the following:

Screen Shot 2020-06-17 at 9.10.42 PM

-> First, let’s identify the slope and y-intercept of our line.

how to graph equation of a line

-> To start, let’s graph the first point on our graph, the y-intercept at point (0,1):

how to graph equation of a line

-> Now for the slope. We are going to go up one and over to the right one for each point, since our slope is 1/1.

how to graph equation of a line

-> Connect all of our coordinate points and label our graph.

how to graph equation of a line

Try the following practice questions on your own!

Practice Questions:

how to graph equation of a line
how to graph equation of a line

Want more Mathsux?  Don’t forget to check out our Youtube channel and more below! And if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to comment below. Happy Calculating! 🙂

Need to brush up on slope? Click here to see how to find the rate of change.

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4 Ways to Factor Trinomials: Algebra

Greeting math peeps and welcome to MathSux! In this post, we are going to go over 4 ways to Factor Trinomials and get the same answer, including, (1) Quadratic Formula (2) Product/Sum, (3) Completing the Square, and (4) Graphing on a Calculator.  If you’re looking for more don’t forget to check out the video and practice questions below.  Happy Calculating! 🙂

Also, if need a review on Factor by Grouping or Difference of Two Squares (DOTS) check out the hyperlinks here!

*If you haven’t done so, check out the video that goes over this exact problem, and don’t forget to subscribe!

We will take this step by step, showing 4 ways to factor trinomials, getting the same answer each and every time! Let’s get to it!

4 Ways to Factor Trinomials

Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.03.55 PM

(1) Quadratic Formula:

4 Ways to Factor Trinomials

____________________________________________________________________

(2) Product/Sum:

4 Ways to Factor Trinomials____________________________________________________________________

(3) Completing the Square:

4 Ways to Factor Trinomials____________________________________________________________________

(4) Graph:

4 Ways to Factor Trinomials

Choose the factoring method that works best for you and try the practice problems on your own below!

Practice Questions:

Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.09.58 PM

Solutions:

Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.10.30 PM

Want a review of all the different factoring methods out there?  Check out the ones left out here (DOTS and GCF) and happy calculating! 🙂

For even more ways to factor quadratic equations, check out How to factor by Grouping here! 🙂

Also, if you want more Mathsux?  Don’t forget to check out our Youtube channel and more below! If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to comment below. Happy Calculating! 🙂

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Completing the Square: Algebra

Want to learn the ins and out of completing the square?  Then you’ve come to the right place! Learn how to Complete the Square step by step in the video and article below, then try the practice problems at the end of this post to truly master the topic! If you’re looking for more on completing the square, check out this post here. Happy Calculating! 🙂 Check out the video below for an in-depth look at completing the square:
Completing the square To answer this question, there are several steps we must follow including: Step 1: Move the whole number, which in this case is 16, to the other side of the equation.This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2020-12-25-at-6.07.43-PM.png This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2020-12-25-at-6.08.19-PM.png Step 2: Make space for our new number on both sides of the equation.  This number is going to be found by using a particular formula shown below: Completing the square Step 3: Add the number 9 to both sides of the equation, which we found using our formula. Completing the square Step 4: Combine like terms on the right side of the equation, adding 16+9 to get 25. Completing the square Step 5: Now, we need to re-write the left side of the equation using the following formula. Completing the square Step 6: Finally, we solve for x by taking the positive and negative square root to get the following answer and solve for two different equations:  Completing the square This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screen-Shot-2020-12-25-at-6.29.22-PM.png Practice Questions: completing the square Solutions: completing the square

Want more Mathsux?  Don’t forget to check out our Youtube channel and more below! And if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to comment below. Happy Calculating! 🙂

Need more of an explanation?  Check out why we complete the square in the first place here ! 🙂

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COVID-19: What does #FlattenTheCurve even mean?

COVID-19: What does #FlattenTheCurve even mean? If you are a human on Earth, then I’m sure you’ve heard about the coronavirus and are currently social distancing. Here in NYC, I’m quarantining like everyone else and listening to all the beautiful math language that has suddenly become mainstream (so, exciting)!  #FlattenTheCurve has become NY’s new catchphrase and for anyone confused about what that means, you’ve come to the right place!

The coronavirus spreads at an Exponential Rate, which means it spreads in a way that increases faster and faster every day.

What does this mean?

For Example, one person with the virus can easily spread the virus to 5 other people, those 5 people can then spread the virus to another 5 people each for a total of an extra 25 people, these 25 people can then spread it to another 5 people each for an extra 125 infected people! And the pattern continues……. See below to get a clearer picture:

COVID-19: What does #FlattenTheCurve even mean?
COVID-19: What does #FlattenTheCurve even mean?

.   *Note: These numbers are not based on actual coronavirus data

The Example we just went over is equal to the exponential equation Screen Shot 2020-04-12 at 1.21.48 PM, but it is only that, an Example! The exact pattern and exponential equation of the future progress of the virus is unknown! We mathematicians, can only measure what has already occurred and prepare/model for the future.  To make the virus spread less rapidly, it is our duty to stay home to slow the rate of this exponentially spreading virus as much as possible.

We want to #FlattenTheCurve a.k.a flatten the increasing exponential curve of new coronavirus cases that appear every day! Hopefully, this post brings some clarity to what’s going on in the world right now.  Even with mathematics, the true outcome of the virus may be unknown, but understanding why we are all at home in the first place and the positive impact it has is also important (and kind of cool).

Stay safe math friends and happy calculating! 🙂

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Math Resources (in the time of COVID)

Calling all students, teachers, and parents!  As everyone is stuck at home during a global pandemic, now is a great time we are all forced to try and understand math (and our sanity level) a little bit more.  Well, I may not be able to help you with the keeping sanity stuff, but as far as math goes, hopefully, the below math resources offer some much needed mathematic support.

All jokes aside I hope everyone is staying safe and successfully social distancing.  Stay well, math friends! 🙂

Kahn Academy: The same Kahn Academy we know and love still has amazing videos and tutorials as usual, but now they also have a live “homeroom” chat on Facebook LIVE every day at 12:00pm. The chats occur daily with Kahn Academy founder Sal and at times feature famous guests such as Bill Gates. Click the link below for more:

Math Resources

Khan Academy Homeroom 

Study.com: In a time when companies are being more generous, Study.com is here for us as they offer up to 1000 licenses for school districts and free lessons for teachers, students, and parents.  Check out all the education freebies here:

Study.com

Math Resources

Math PlanetIf you’re looking for free math resources in Pre-Algebra, Algebra, Algebra 2, and Geometry then you will find the answers you need at Math Planet.  All free all the time, find their website here:

MathPlanet 

Math Resources

MathSux: Clearly, I had to mention MathSux, the very site you are on right now! Check out free math videos, lesson, practice questions, and more for understanding math any way that works for you!

MathSux

What is your favorite educational site?  Let me know in the comments, and stay well! 🙂

Rate of Change: Algebra

The rate of change, the rate of motion, the rate of a heartbeat. A chart on a piece of paper as boring as it may seem, can produce some pretty great numbers that directly relate to us human folk.

The question below may make you groan at first glance, but what happens if we use our imagination to picture the real-life bird it’s describing? Any better? Yes? No? Well, either way we must solve, so let’s get to it

rate of change algebra

How do I answer this question?

It wants us to find the Rate of Change, specifically between 3 and 9 seconds. Let’s hi-light those two values on our given table:

What is the Rate of Change?

To get the Rate of Change between these two values, we need to go back to the good ole’ Slope Formula and realize that the list of values is really a list of x and y coordinates.

rate of change algebra

Now let’s plug in the coordinate values (3, 6.26) and (9,3.41) into our slope formula:

rate of change algebra

Extra Tip! Notice that we added the labels feet/second to our answer.  Why does this make sense?? The question tells us that P(t) represents feet and that t is equal to seconds.  Another way to look at this question when applying it to the slope formula is to realize that we are finding the change of feet divided by the change of seconds.                                                          ____________________________________________________________________________________

Still got questions?  Let me know in the comments and as always happy calculating!:)

Looking for the next step? Learn how to graph equation of a line, y=mx+b here!

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How to Factor Quadratic Equations: Algebra

In this post, we are going to dive deep into how to factor Quadratic equations! There are so many different methods to choose from including GCF, Product/Sum, DOTS, and the Quadratic Formula.  Here we will go step by step into each method on how to factor quadratic equations, each with their own set of practice questions. For a review on how to factor by grouping, check out this post here and  happy calculating! 🙂

Why factor in the first place, you may say? We want to manipulate the equation until we solve for x.  Solving for x is our main goal, and factoring allows us to do that.  Now let’s get to the good stuff!

How to factor quadratic equations

Greatest Common Factor (GCF):

The greatest common factor is the highest possible number that can be divided out from an equation.  This gets the equation into its simplest form and makes it easier for us to solve for x.

Before considering which type of factoring methdo to use, always ask yourself, “Can I take out a GCF?”

How to factor quadratic equationsHow to factor quadratic equations

How to factor quadratic equations

Product/Sum:

This factoring method is for quadratic equations only! That means the equation takes on the following form:

How to factor quadratic equationsHow to factor quadratic equationsHow to factor quadratic equations

How to factor quadratic equationsHow to factor quadratic equations

How to factor quadratic equations

How to factor quadratic equations

Difference of Two Squares DOTS)

Not to play favorites or anything, but DOTS is the easiest and most lovable of the factoring methods.  This factoring method just makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside or maybe that’s just me).  Before we get into how to do DOTS, let’s talk about when?

Quadratic Formula:

We have heard of the quadratic equations, so how id the quadratic formula different?

The Answer: The Quadratic Formula is what we use to factor any trinomial. You can use product/sum on trinomials like we discussed earlier, but this may not always work out easy.  The Quadratic Formila on the other hand will work every time!

Low and behold, the Quadratic Formula:

Want more Mathsux?  Don’t forget to check out our Youtube channel and more below! And if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to comment below. Happy Calculating! 🙂

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Simultaneous Equations: Algebra

In need of a bit of review on Simultaneous Equations?  Well, now is your chance! Learn how to solve these confusing bad mama jamma’s in three different ways and choose which one works best for you!

I’m also excited to introduce my new YouTube page for MathSux!  Hope these new set of videos help.  Let me know if you have any more questions in the comments.  Happy calculating! 🙂

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