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Activities for Year 9

2017, a new year, and my second year at Geelong College is about to start. I have had a year to appreciate the school culture and structures, the strengths of my staff and the way they like to work. I’d like to integrate ClassPad use into our Year 9 courses and will publish the written materials on this site.

Context and constraints

  • We follow the VELS version of the Australian Curriculum.
  • The focus of Year 9 is algebraic fluency
  • Our current course (and text) is focussed on “by-hand” algebraic skills. While our students have ClassPads, classroom practice is to do traditional skills first and then later show how technology can be used.
  • Summative assessments are primarily tests where rote learning and cramming are often successful short term strategies.
  • The vast majority of students (or their parents) would like to keep Methods as a possible future pathway.

Some principles I aim to follow:

  • Fluency is equally likely to develop from a basis when we start with the technology as opposed to doing it by-hand first.
  • The CAS is new so I want to use that novelty to engage my students, i.e. adopt a different approach to algebra.
  • Use some open-ended tasks as summative assessment to see what all students are capable of.
  • Enable more students come to see mathematics as an engaging problem-solving activity
  • Want to encourage thinking and reasoning


  • All students can learn
  • Limited “by-hand” skills should not prevent students accessing the standard curriculum
  • Technology can be used to enhance learning
Topic Activity Apps Aim
Introduction Calculation quiz Main Perform arithmetic calculations in Main and introduce the templates of the soft keyboard
Pythagoras Pythagoras using NumSolve NumSolve
Pythagoras using Geometry Geometry
Algebra Algebra quiz Main

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