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Video Clip: The Parentheses Make the Difference

Written by Tom Fanning
November 01, 2010

Marshall, a 7th grader, is demonstrating what he knows about order of operations in mathematics. This video is a preliminary assessment of what he already knows about evaluating algebraic expressions.

Prior to this video session, Marshall worked with a partner on order of operations puzzles to refresh his memory of this common middle school math concept.

He is writing on the video worksheet form, which allows him to choose the difficulty of the problem and gives him space to work out the two versions of the problem. On page 2 of the worksheet is a rubric for him to grade his performance in the video.

By solving both versions of his example, Marshall is able to explain the nuances of order of operations and thus demonstrate his knowledge.

His references at the end to the effects of the parentheses leave us hanging and wanting more details from him as to exactly why and how the parentheses affect the outcome.

Click here to view the video worksheet form:

video worksheet.pdf

Open Video worksheet.pdf

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