TeacherResourceBooklet

TeacherResourceBooklet
Name:
School:
Algebraic Reasoning: Problems and Solutions
Project Maths Seminar
1.01 Maths Competency Test - Introduction
The test below is one example of a Maths Competency Test and is intended for use in post primary schools to
gain insights into students’ algebraic reasoning in second year. It is envisaged that this competency test be
administered to second- year students at the beginning of the year. Analysis of the outcomes of the test will
inform planning for interventions and measures to be taken to address any problems identified and to build on
evident strengths. The analysis should, therefore, pinpoint those areas of the syllabus requiring particular
attention during second year. In order to support the work of schools in this regard, the approach to be adopted
in using and analysing the test and how students’ algebraic reasoning can be developed will be discussed at the
seminars organised by the Project Maths Development Team during the school year 2014-2015.
While correct solutions to each problem are provided, it is more important that the incorrect answers be
analysed so that common errors are identified. This has the potential of providing teachers with a valuable
insight into ‘student-thinking’ and opportunities for misconceptions in their algebraic reasoning to be discussed
and rectified. It is important to note that there is no requirement on teachers to administer this test. It is not a
standardised test nor does it produce results that can be referenced against national norms. It is a guide for
teachers to enable them to identify weaknesses as well as areas of strength in their students’ algebraic
reasoning.
–1–
1.02 Maths Competency Test
Name:
Class:
Date:
 For the multiple choice questions, please indicate your answer by circling the letter of your choice.
 You should select only one answer for each question.
 If you make a mistake and wish to change your answer, please place the incorrect selection in brackets [ ]
and circle your revised answer.
 Calculator use is not permitted.
 Please show ALL YOUR WORK in the space provided for each question.
Question 1. Complete the following equality sentences using integers.
Show your work here
(i)
( )
( )
Question 2. The first three stages of a pattern are shown below. Each stage is made up of a certain number of white
tiles and a certain number of shaded tiles.
Assuming the pattern continues:
(i)
Draw the next stage of the pattern.
(ii)
In a particular stage of the pattern there are 20 shaded tiles. How many white tiles are in this stage of
the pattern?
(iii)
Is it possible in this pattern to have 85 shaded tiles on the outside? Explain your reasoning.
(iv)
Write down the relationship (using words or symbols) between the number of white tiles and the
number of shaded tiles in any stage of the pattern. State clearly the meaning of any symbols where used.
Question 3.
(a)
is equivalent to which of the following?
(b)
(c)
(d)
Show your work here
–2–
Question 4.
is equal to which of the following?
(a) 3
(b) 23
(c) 41
(d) 25
Show your work here
Question 5. Apples cost
cents each. Bananas cost cents each.
If I buy 3 apples and 2 bananas, what does
(a) 3 apples and 2 bananas
represent?
(b) The total amount of fruit I buy
(c) The total cost of 3 apples and 2 bananas
Show your work here
Question 6. Which of the following is equivalent to
(a)
(b)
(c)
(d)
Show your work here
Question 7. Which of the following is equivalent to (
(a)
(b)
)
(c)
(d)
Show your work here
Question 8. Which of the following is equivalent to
(a)
(b)
(c)
Show your work here
Question 9. Which of the following is equivalent to (
(a)
(b)
(c)
) ?
(d)
Show your work here
–3–
(e)
Question 10. Which of the following is an equivalent expression to
(a)
(b)
(c)
?
(d)
Show your work here
Question 11. When an odd number is added to an odd number the total will be? Explain why.
(a) Always an odd number
(b) Always an even number
(c) Sometimes an odd number
(d) Sometimes an even number
Show your explanation here
Question 12. Which of the following is equivalent to
(a)
(b)
(c)
(d)
Show your work here
Question 13. Which of the following is true, for
(a)
not equal to
(b)
and
(c)
(
)
Show your work here
Question 14. John sells cars. He receives a basic weekly wage of €400 and he also gets commission of
€50 for every car he sells per week. What is his total weekly wage if he sells cars per week?
(a)
(b)
(c)
(d)
Show your work here
–4–
Question 15. Which of the following is equal to (
(a)
(b)
) ?
(c)
(d)
Show your work here
Question 16. Which of the following is equal to
(a) 1
(b) 0
? Explain why.
(c) 5
(d) 50
Show your explanation here
Question 17. A length of wood is 6 metres long. It is cut into two pieces. One of the pieces is
How long is the other piece?
(a) (
) metres
(b)
metres
(c) I can’t say as I don’t know what
is.
(d) (
metres long.
) metres
Show your work here
Question 18. I bought a pencil and a marker. The marker cost € more than the pencil.
The cost of both items was €
. How much did the pencil cost?
(a) €
(b) €
(c) €
Show your work here
Question 19. Considering the equation
(a) is greater than
(b) is greater than
, which of the following is true, for
(c)
?
(d) I cannot tell which is greater.
Show your work here
Question 20. In a hospital, there are 5 times as many nurses as doctors. If we let
and
equal the number of doctors, which one of the following is correct?
(a)
(b)
(c)
(d)
Show your work here
–5–
equal the number of nurses
1.03 Problem Solving Template: Planning, Observation and Reflection
1. Please insert here the problem that was given to the students.
2. What are the learning objectives of the lesson (i.e. what do you, as the teacher, hope to achieve from the lesson)?
Motivate
To get students to explain their thinking
Make connections
Assess prior knowledge
Investigate a new concept
To promote literacy and numeracy
Other
If other, please specify:
3. What are the learning outcomes from the syllabus that you are hoping to achieve from this lesson (i.e. what
should your students be able to do as a result of the lesson)?
4. What prior knowledge do students need to engage with this problem?
–6–
5. What different strategies did students use in attempting the problem (include examples of student work)?
6. What was your role during the lesson?
7. Identify something about the problem/lesson that worked well.
8. What would you do differently next time?
–7–
1.04 Algebra Road Map
“For effective
learning,
algebraic
thinking must
be nurtured in
parallel with
arithmetic
understanding”
Pre-Algebra →
Number Theory
Solid understanding of Number Theory from Strand 3
Useful Methodology: Array Models, T&L on Integers, Fractions & Ratio
Patterns
Fostering ‘Algebraic Thinking’ through exposure to patterns,
relationships, generalising and problem solving.
1
2
Understanding Variables →
“Algebra provides finite ways of
managing the infinite.”
2
Lynn Arthur Steen
Develop pattern-based thinking
recognise, construct and extend patterns (T&L on Patterns)
use tables to represent a pattern (patterns with unifix cubes)
use patterns to represent real-world situations
develop language to describe patterns precisely, both orally and
in writing, as a prelude to using symbols.
use patterns to solve problems (Locker Problem)
Variables can be used in 4
different ways:
-
Deliberate focus on relationships involving two variables
develop an understanding of how one quantity changes as a
result of the change in another quantity:
Methodologies: Money Box Problem/ Sunflowers Problem
Students use tables and graphs to represent a relationship
Students introduced to linear relationships, constant rate of
change, variables, increasing/decreasing change, slope = rise/run
Generalising using symbols
Simplification: Letters employed to reduce the language used to
describe patterns. (Doesn’t matter what letter/symbol is used)
Students generalise the pattern, using symbols, and make their
first formula.
The Power of Pattern-Based Thinking: Problem Solving
Patterns and relationships are used to model maths and realworld situations, particularly for solving problems.
Symbols are used to generalise the rule of a pattern observed in
a situation. Then that rule can be used to solve the problem.
By doing Patterns first:
Algebra is seen as the language we use to describe patterns and
relationships for the ultimate goal of problem solving.
Students also get a very good introduction to a variable as a changing
quantity.
Functions
Introduce the terms inputs, outputs, a mapping, domain and range.
Money Box Problem N → N, Sunflowers Question N → R
A formula like
(infinite amount of
possibilities)
A Law/Identity like the
Commutative Law,
(for all cases)
-
-
A Relationship/Rule like
{(
)|
}
(infinite amount of points that
fit a rule)
An unknown like
(one number from an infinite
set of possibilities)
All of the above can be explored
using patterns.
Problem Solving:
Using a variable as an unknown can
be introduced and explored
through problem solving.
Example:
For how many days did John need
to save in order to accumulate €45
for a new computer game?
Play “Guess the Rule” game.
Algebra →
Algebra skills seen as “generalised
arithmetic”. Make an explicit association
between symbols and numbers.
Use array models and algebra tiles
(drawings) to help misconceptions.
3
3
Money Box Problem extended:
We can show adding like terms as part of
a real-world problem solving question.
For example: 2 family members
combining their savings to buy a
computer console costing €249
Skills for Solving Equations:
After Money Box / Sunflowers Problem
is used to explain an unknown in context
of a real-world problem, extend this to
teach the skills for solving equations.
Methodology: T&L on Equations,
stabilisers
Solving Word Problems using Algebra:
Show that algebra allows choice and
flexibility in solving problems.
Let students discover that algebra is
often the most efficient way to solve a
problem, especially word problems.
Overview of the learning outcome for
teaching algebra:
The relationship based approach to
learning algebra should culminate in
students having a deep understanding of
algebra which allows easy movement
between story, table, graph and
equation.
Learners should also have an
appreciation that the power of algebra
lies in its capacity to describe
relationships for the purpose of problem
solving.
Extension
“Most of the major principles of
algebra and geometry emerge as
generalisations of patterns in
number and shape”
-
Factorising
-
Construct some Perimeter
and Area Formulae using
patterns and variables
-
Discover theorems through
patterns
-
Extend rise over run triangle
into the formula for slope,
then the distance between 2
points.
Co-ordinate Geometry
understood as the marriage
of geometry and algebra.
-
Discover quadratic, cubic and
exponential relationships
through patterns
-
Look at patterns in Statistics
-
Discover Trigonometric
Ratios through patterns
-
Investigate patterns of
change in Periodic and
Trigonometric functions
-
Rates of change observed in
patterns can be extended to
change at an instantaneous
point in Calculus.
-
Extend patterns and symbols
into Sequences and Series
-
Formalise Functions
1.05 Circle Connections
–9–
1.05 Circle Connections
–10–
–11–
–12–
1.06 Circle Connections Plan
The first two pages of this document show a suggested sequence of teaching to emphasise the connections
between synthetic geometry, co-ordinate geometry (which connects algebra and synthetic geometry) and
trigonometry, using the circle as the unifying theme. Further connections can be made to complex numbers e.g.
multiplication by , modulus of a complex number and polar form of a complex number but these are not dealt
with specifically in this document. The remainder of the document (pages 15 to 25) looks at each part of the
sequence in more detail.
Part A
1. Terms and definitions associated with the circle
2. Transformations of the circle
3. Lengths and areas associated with the circle including such questions as:
(i) What happens to the circumference if the radius length is doubled?
(ii) What happens to the area if the radius length is doubled?
4. Angle measures in the circle: degrees and radians
Part B
This part connects synthetic and co-ordinate geometry. However, the students just go as far as finding the
centre and radius length of the circle in Part B, and do not derive the equation of the circle until Part C. The
equation of the circle, which may appear new to students at this stage, is left until later, in order to emphasise
the connections to geometry first. It is a very small step to take, from knowing the centre and radius of a circle,
to finding its equation. Finding the centre and radius, given various clues, is where most of the thinking occurs.
Deriving the equation of the circle is yet another example of where students can themselves construct new
knowledge from prior knowledge.
The theorems and constructions associated with the circle, are listed below and later on (pages 15 to 25) more
detail is given on connecting them to the coordinated plane. The intention is that students will move
seamlessly between the uncoordinated and the coordinated plane, verifying geometric results using algebraic
methods. For example, students could construct a tangent to a circle at a point on an uncoordinated plane.
This could be followed by constructing a tangent to a circle with a given centre, at a given point of contact on
the coordinated plane. Using algebraic methods, the equation of the tangent is found and plotted, thus
verifying the construction of the tangent.
Note: It is envisaged that students would have a list of the theorems and constructions available to them to
facilitate making connections.
–13–
(1) Theorem 19, Corollary 5
Theorem 19: The angle at the centre of a circle standing on a given arc is twice the angle at any point of
the circle standing on the same arc.
Corollary 5: If ABCD is a cyclic quadrilateral, then opposite angles sum to 180°, (and converse).
(2a) Theorem 20, Construction 19 and Corollary 6
Theorem 20: (i) Each tangent is perpendicular to the radius that goes to the point of contact.
(ii) If P lies on the circle , and a line through
is perpendicular to the radius to , then
is a tangent to .
Construction 19: Tangent to a given circle at a given point on the circle
Corollary 6: If two circles share a common tangent line at one point, then the two centres
and that point are collinear.
(2b) Theorem 20, Construction 1 and Construction 17
Theorem 20: (i) Each tangent is perpendicular to the radius that goes to the point of contact .
(ii) If
lies on the circle , and a line through
is perpendicular to the radius to , then
is a tangent to .
Construction 1: Bisector of a given angle, using only compass and straight-edge.
Construction 17: Incentre and incircle of a given triangle, using only straight-edge and compass.
(3) Constructions 2 & 16, Corollaries 3 & 4 and Theorem 21
Construction 2: Perpendicular bisector of a segment, using only compass and straight-edge.
Construction 16: Circumcentre and circumcircle of a given triangle, using only straight edge and
compass.
Corollary 3: Each angle in a semi-circle is a right angle.
Corollary 4: If the angle standing on a chord
at some point of the circle is a right angle, then
is a diameter.
Theorem 21: (i) The perpendicular from the centre to a chord bisects the chord.
(ii) The perpendicular bisector of a chord passes through the centre.
Part C
1. The equation of the circle derived by students using prior knowledge
2. Two equivalent forms of the circle equation
Part D
1. The unit circle and the trigonometric functions for all angles
2. The graphs of ( )
(
) and ( )
(
–14–
)
Part A
Initial Vocabulary and definitions
Circle, radius, diameter, chord, tangent, point of contact, circumference, arc, semicircle,
disc, sector, segment, angle at the centre of a circle standing on an arc or standing on a
chord (central angle), quadrants of a circle etc. (Note: When using the word radius we are using it as a label but
when we want to refer to the length of the line segment labelled radius, we use the phrase “length of the
radius”.)
New vocabulary, such as radian, circumcircle, incircle etc. will arise as new knowledge is acquired.
Activity: Tarsias on circle vocabulary (available on www.projectmaths.ie )
Apart from the usual way of using the Tarsias i.e. matching terms and definitions or terms and diagrams,
students could be asked to explain terms to each other. Working in pairs, one student explains the term and the
other student draws a sketch of it. Students swap roles alternately.
Construction of a Circle
Connection: Always linked to the definition

Construct a circle on a blank page.
Construct a circle on a coordinate plane.
What do you need to know in order to construct a unique circle?
 What changes about a circle if it is translated, undergoes central or axial symmetry or rotation?
What stays the same?
These tasks can be executed on the coordinate plane i.e. given a centre and radius of a circle, find the new
centre and radius under the given transformation.
Lengths associated with the circle
Connection: Proportional reasoning
Lengths: radius length, diameter length, length of the circumference, length of a semicircle, arc length
Students might collect and graph data for the circumference length and the diameter length of a set of
different-sized circles. They could extend their prior knowledge of algebra and data analysis by recognising that
the points (
) nearly form a straight line, so
is between 3.1 and 3.2—a rough estimation of .
Connection: Measurement, data analysis, rate of change, linear functions
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2013 LCHL Q9 Paper 2 (Arbelos)
Areas associated with the circle
Connection: Perimeter, patterns & generalising
Connection: Proportional reasoning
Area of a disc, area of a sector, area of a segment
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2014 LCOL Q5 Paper 2 (area of sectors, decomposing areas)
Connection: Area of a triangle
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2013 LCHL Q9 Paper 2 (Arbelos)
Connection: Pythagoras’ Theorem, area, growing patterns and generalising
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2014 LCHL Q9 Paper 2 (Lunes)
–15–
Connection: Pythagoras’ Theorem
Angles in a circle (radian section is LCHL)
Connection: Construction 18 (angle of 60 for LCOL and LCHL)
Connection: Construction of a hexagon in a circle as a possible extension
Degree measure and radian measure

Construct an angle of 60 in a circle.
(Extension: Construct an angle of 30 to link to Construction 1: Bisector of a
given angle)
 Construct a hexagon in a circle. (Start by drawing a line and mark a point on
the line to be the centre of the circle.)
 How many 60 degree angles are there in a circle?
 If you were to measure a radius length along the arc
, would the angle at
the centre, subtended by the radius length, be less than or greater than 60 ?
 This angle at the centre subtended by an arc equal in length to the radius is called a radian.
 How many radius lengths are in a circumference of a circle?
Activity for students supported by https://vine.co/v/MUqhTIOihrg (6 second videos)
Teaching and Learning Plan on radians: www.projectmaths.ie
Each radius length as an arc of a circle corresponds to a unique angle at the centre. We call this angle a radian.
Note that we are now measuring angles in terms of lengths, which are real numbers.
(The appeal of radian measure lies in the way it enables use of linear measurement using real numbers for
angles.)
Connection: Limits: Students can intuitively see that sin𝜃 is approximately equal to 𝜃 in radians when theta is
small. A GeoGebra file such as is shown below will help students to visualise this.


Convert degrees to radians and vice versa
Find the length of an arc using radian measure. This follows from the definition of the radian.
Connection: Connect to the method of finding arc length using degrees.

Derive the formula for the area of a sector using radian measure.
Connection: Connect to the method for finding area of a sector using degrees.
–16–
Part B
(1) Theorem 19 and corollaries 2 and 5 (LCHL and JCHL)
Theorem 19: The angle at the centre of a circle standing on a given arc is twice the angle at any point of the
circle standing on the same arc.
Corollary 2: All angles at points of a circle, standing on the same arc, are equal.
Corollary 5: If
is a cyclic quadrilateral, then opposite angles sum to 180°.
Activity for students: Constructing, investigating through measurement, use of dynamic geometry software,
proof)
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2012 LCHL Q6 (b) Paper 2 (Cyclic quadrilateral)
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2008 LCHL Q1 (c) (ii) Paper 2 below shows an application of Theorem 19.
Given that at this point in the sequence, students have not yet dealt with the equation of a circle, this question
can be modified to ask just for the centre and radius of the circle for part (i)
The connection to Theorem 19 is in part (ii).
–17–
(2a) Theorem 20 & Construction 19 and Corollary 6

A discussion of construction 19 for the tangent to a circle at a point, carried out (i) on an un-coordinated
plane and (ii) on a co-ordinated plane, where the centre of the circle and the point of contact are given.
 The equation of the tangent can be found using algebraic methods. This tangent line can be plotted,
thus verifying the construction.
Theorem 20: (i) Each tangent is perpendicular to the radius that goes to the point of contact.
(ii) If lies on the circle , and a line through
tangent to s.
is perpendicular to the radius to , then is a
Construction 19: Tangent to a given circle at a given point on it.
Extension: Link the construction of the tangent to the construction of the
perpendicular bisector of a line segment.

Construct the tangent to a circle centre (1,2) at a point (3,4) on the circle on the coordinate plane and
find the equation of the tangent
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2012 LCHL Q3 Paper 2 (Various solution methods are possible)
Connection: Pythagoras’ theorem, slopes of lines, tangents.
Assessment & Problem Solving: UL 2012 problem solving questions:
–18–
The area referred to is the internal area of the
triangular frame containing the snooker balls.
Corollary 6: If two circles share a common tangent line at one point, then the two centres and that point are
collinear.

What is the relationship between and when the circles touch externally/internally?
On the coordinate plane:
 Prove that two circles touch externally/internally given both centres and both radii.
 Prove that two circles do not intersect given both centres and both radii.
 If we know the point in common and both centres, find the equation of the common tangent.
 If we know the centres, and the ratio of the lengths of the radii (if they touch externally), find the
point of contact and the equation of the common tangent.
 Given the centre and the equation of the tangent to a circle, find the radius of the circle. (Perp. Dis)
Assessment & Problem Solving: Given the centres and radii of two circles touching externally, find the point of
contact of the two circles.
Connection: Proportional reasoning (e.g. 2014 Q4 LCHL Paper 2: Find the coordinates of the point of
contact knowing the centres of the circles and lengths of the two radii without using a formula.)
Assessment & Problem Solving: Questions showing the use of Corollary 6 on the coordinate plane.
2014 LCHL Q9 (a) (ii)
2013 LCHL Q4: Find the point of
contact and the equation of the
tangent common to both circles:
2012 LCHL Q2: Prove that circles are touching given centres and radii, verify the point of contact, find the
equation of the common tangent
2012 LCHL Sample Paper Q4: Using the perpendicular distance from the centre of the circle to the tangent being
equal to the radius
2010 LCHL Q4: Find centre and radius given -axis,
centre of the circle.
as tangents and the line
–19–
through the
(2b) Construction 17 (incircle) using Theorem 20 and Construction 1
Theorem 20: (i) Each tangent is perpendicular to the radius that goes to the point of contact.
(ii) If lies on the circle , and a line through
tangent to .
is perpendicular to the radius to , then is a
Construction 1: Bisector of a given angle, using only compass and a straight-edge
Construction 17: Incentre and incircle of a given triangle using only straight-edge and compass










Draw a sketch of the incircle of a triangle; the circle must touch the three sides of the triangle.
What does the word “touch” indicate about the relationship between the sides of the triangle and the
circle?
What is the relationship between the sides of the triangle and the three radii of the incircle at the points
of contact?
Describe the distances between the centre of the incircle and the sides of the triangle at the point of
contact given the definition of a circle.
What construction will allow you to find the centre of the incircle?
What information does an angle bisector give about the points on the angle bisector?
Construct the bisectors of all the angles in a triangle.
What do you notice about all the angle bisectors?
Construct the incircle of the triangle.
Construct the incircle of various triangles.
Assessment & Problem Solving: LCHL 2012 Q6B Paper 2 (incorporates Theorem 20, corollary 5, Theorem 19,
Properties of an angle bisector)
This question (or the construction of an incircle) could be transferred to a coordinate plane.
–20–
(3) Construction 2, Construction 16, corollaries 3 and 4 and Theorem 21

How many circles can be drawn through one point?
How many circles can be drawn through two points? How are you constrained when given two points?
Connection: Students should see that since the two points given have to be equidistant from one point i.e.
the centre of the circle, that the construction of the perpendicular bisector of a line segment will give them
the locus of all points equidistant from two points.

How many circles can be drawn through three non-collinear points? Can you build on the previous
outcome? Carry out the construction.
 Could you have drawn more than one circle through those three points?
 How many points define a unique circle?
 Join up all three points to form a triangle.
 Draw the perpendicular bisector of the third side of the triangle constructed. What do you notice?
(The 3 perpendicular bisectors pass through one point i.e. they are concurrent.
New vocabulary: Concurrent)
 Using the list of constructions, which construction have you carried out?
(From the above activity the students have carried out Construction 16: Circumcentre and circumcircle of a
given triangle using only compass and straight-edge. Ask students to label the circumcircle, circumcentre
and circumradius on their constructions.)

The sides of the triangle are chords of the circumcircle. What do you notice about the relationship
between the chords of this circle, the perpendicular bisectors of the chords and the centre of the circle?
 Using the list of theorems, can you identify a theorem associated with your construction?
(Students now see an instance of Theorem 21: (1) The perpendicular from the centre of the circle to a chord
bisects the chord. (2) The perpendicular bisector of a chord passes through the centre. )

Construct the circumcircle for different types of triangles. Carry out the constructions with given points
on the coordinate plane and verify the coordinates of the circumcentre and the length of the
circumradius using algebra.
Examples of triangles with integer coordinates:
(1) Triangle with vertices H(-1,-3), I(5,9) and J(11,1)
Acute
(2) Triangle with vertices D(1,6), E(10,3) and F(2,3)
Obtuse
(3) Triangle with vertices A(1,3), B(7,5) and C(9,-1)
Right angled
(Different groups of students present their work (possibly using a visualizer) and patterns are identified.

Verify Corollaries 3 & 4 on the coordinate plane using slopes and or/distances with triangle ABC
Corollary 3: Each angle in a semicircle is a right angle. Corollary 4: If the angle standing on a chord [BC]
at some point of the circle is a right angle, then [BC] is a diameter of the circle.

Given 2 points ( ) and (
) on a circle and the equation of a line
centre of the circle, find the centre and radius of the circle.
Assessment & Problem Solving: LCHL 2013 Q9 (d) (Arbelos and cyclic quadrilaterals)
Assessment & Problem Solving: Workshop 6 questions
–21–
through the
Part C
Equation of a circle
Students should understand that the derivation of the formula for the equation of a circle is based on
Pythagoras’ theorem.
If students have been exposed to deriving the formula for the distance between two points, they will see that
the equation of the circle is just a statement of Pythagoras’ theorem.
We could start with a circle with centre ( ) as shown first below, or we could start with a circle with centre not
( ) and show that the equation of a circle with centre ( ) is a special case of the equation of a circle with
centre (
).
Note: To derive the equation of the circle, one could begin with a circle with centre ( ) passing through a
specific point and then generalise to find the equation of a circle with centre (
) and passing through the
point (
). The following sequence (i) to (iv) however, begins with a circle passing through a centre which is
not ( ) and in part (iii) we derive the equation of a circle with centre (
) and passing through a point
(
). We then show that the equation of the circle with centre ( ) passing through a point (
) is a special
case where (
) = ( ). Both approaches help students make sense of the equation of the circle formula.
Part (i): Circle with centre (
) and containing the point (
•
Construct a line segment from (
•
Complete the right triangle using a line segment from (
the triangle
•
Mark in the lengths of the other two sides of the right triangle.
•
Write down Pythagoras’ Theorem for this triangle and use it to find the radius length
•
Find the distance from (
Pythagoras’ Theorem.
Part (ii): Using a general point (
) to (
) to (
) (starting with a specific circle)
) and a line segment from (
) to (
) to (
).
) as the hypotenuse, of length
of
) using the distance formula and compare with the result using
) on any circle with centre (1, 2)
•
Construct a circle, centre (
) passing through a point A(
•
Construct line segments from (
•
Construct a right triangle using a line segment from (
length .
•
Mark in the lengths of the other two sides of the right triangle in terms of
•
Write down Pythagoras’ Theorem for this triangle and use it to find the radius length
•
Find the distance from ( ) to (
using Pythagoras’ Theorem.
) to (
) and from (
) to (
).
) to (
).
) as the hypotenuse of the triangle of
and .
) using the distance formula and compare with the equation for
–22–
Part (iii): A circle with any centre (
) and any point (
) on its circumference
•
Construct a circle, centre (
) passing through a point (
•
Construct line segments from (
•
Construct a right triangle using a line segment from (
triangle
•
Mark in the lengths of the other two sides of the right triangle in terms of
•
Write down Pythagoras’ Theorem for this triangle and use it to find the radius length
•
Find the distance from (
Pythagoras’ Theorem.
•
Is this equation true for all circles? (Go back to the definition of the circle.)
) to (
) to (
) and from (
) to (
).
) to (
).
) as the hypotenuse of length
of the
.
) using the distance formula and compare with the result using
Part (iv): Showing that the equation of circle with centre (
) and radius length is a special case of
) and radius length .
the equation of a circle with centre (

Given the equation of the circle (
centre ( ) and radius length ?
Follow up:
)
(
)
, what would be the equation of a circle with
• Use the equation of the circle formula to get the equations of circles with different centres and different radii
• Write down circle equations and then find their centres and radii
• Use two ways of checking if a point is on, inside, or outside the circle. Compare both ways.
• Given a circle with a radius which is the largest number of a Pythagorean triple, use the particular
Pythagorean triple to find 12 points on the circle with integer values.
–23–
Equivalent forms of the equation of the circle
• If
is the equation of a circle, centre ( ) then
,
is an equivalent form
of the equation of that circle. We will look at other equivalent forms of the equation of a circle.
• Expand the equation of the circle, given in the form
(
)
(
)
and show that the expanded form is equivalent to
• Explain where comes from and how it can be used to find . Explain the relationship between
by comparing coefficients. Given the circle of the equation in the form
can you find the centre and radius of the circle?
how
• Starting with the form
of the equation of the circle, practice the procedure of
)
(
)
completing the square to write the equation of the circle in the form (
•
,
Given
, is an equivalent form of
how can you find the centre and radius of the circle?
• Given either form of the equation of the circle, (
derive the other equivalent form.
)
(
)
.
or
,
Further work with both forms of the equation of a circle
• How do you recognise the equation of a circle? What order is the equation of a circle? Does it have an
term? Compare the coefficients of the and
terms in the circle equation.
• Do the following equations represent the equations of circles:
(
)
? Explain your answers.
• What type of circle cannot pass through the origin? (Circle with centre ( ).)
• Given the equation of a circle as
how would you know if the circle passed
through the origin?
• Write down your own circle equations (in the two equivalent forms) and then find the centres and radii of
these circles. Work backwards to verify your answers.
Verify using GeoGebra also.
• How could we find the equation of a circle in two different ways if given 3 points on the circle?
• What is the equation of a circle with centre (
) and radius , if its centre is on the –axis?
• What is the equation of a circle with centre (
) and radius , if its centre is on the –axis?
• What is the equation of a circle which touches the -axis?
• What is the equation of a circle which touches the -axis?
• What is the equation of a circle which touches both the - axis and the -axis?
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2014, Q4, Paper 2 Sample Paper.
Assessment & Problem Solving: 2011 Q5, Paper 2 (intersection of lines and circles).
(Intersection of lines and circles: Students can learn for the first time about solving between a quadratic equation and a
linear equation in the context of coordinate geometry of the circle. This is an opportunity to review key skills in algebra.
Once the procedure has been learned for finding the point of intersection between a line and a circle, the students can easily
progress to finding the point of intersection between a line and other shapes described by equations of degree 2.)
Assessment & Problem Solving: Find the length of the chord cut off the line
in more than one way.
–24–
by the circle
Part D
Unit circle and the trigonometric functions
 Construct a circle with centre ( ) and radius 1 on the coordinate plane.
This is called the unit circle as it has centre ( ) and radius equal to one unit.
 Name 4 points with integer coordinates on the unit circle.
 Choose any point with coordinates (
) on the unit circle, in the first quadrant.
Draw in the radius from ( ) to ( ).
 Draw a line segment from ( ) to ( ). Draw a line segment from ( ) to ( ).
This completes the right angled triangle with vertices ( ), ( ) and ( ).
 Write down Pythagoras’ Theorem for this right angled triangle.
Alternatively use the distance formula to find the distance from ( ) to (
). Rewrite the equation without
square roots.
 Mark in the angle in standard position in the triangle drawn in the first quadrant.
 Write down the relationship between
and the -coordinate of where the terminal ray of the angle
intersects the unit circle. (
)
 Write down the relationship between
and the -coordinate of where the terminal ray of the angle
intersects the unit circle.
(
)
The fact that
is true for all values of in the unit circle enables us to extend our use of the
trigonometric ratios (learned in Junior Certificate and restricted to angles between and
) to trigonometric
functions which model real life phenomena that occur in cycles.
Triangles occur in circles.
Circles link to cycles.
Trigonometric functions can be used to model real life phenomena that
occur in cycles.

Prove that
.
Using the real-life analogy with movement of a point on a Ferris wheel, describe how
and
vary as a
point moves from ( ) around the wheel back to ( ). We are looking at co-variation
here. What happens to the sine (or cosine) of the angle as we rotate around the
coordinate grid? The sine (or cosine) value of the angle is a function of the angle of
rotation. Sometimes we refer to these trigonometric functions as circular functions
because they can be defined using the unit circle.
Plot graphs of ( )
( ) and ( )
( ) and compare. Plot graphs of
( )
( ). Relate and back to the circle.
–25–
Notes on Circle Connections:
–26–
1.07 Theorems and Corollaries
1. Vertically opposite angles are equal in measure.
2. In an isosceles triangle, the angles opposite the equal sides are equal, (and converse).
3. If a transversal makes equal alternate angles on two lines, then the lines are parallel, (and converse).
4. The angles in any triangle add to
5. Two lines are parallel if and only if, for any transversal, corresponding angles are equal.
6. Each exterior angle of a triangle is equal to the sum of the interior opposite angles.
7. The angle opposite the greater of two sides is greater than the angle opposite the lesser side, (and converse).
8. Two sides of a triangle are together greater than the third.
9. In a parallelogram, opposite sides are equal, and opposite angles are equal, (and converses).
Corollary 1: A diagonal divides a parallelogram into two congruent triangles.
10. The diagonals of a parallelogram bisect one another.
11. If three parallel lines cut off equal segments on some transversal line, then they will cut off equal segments on
any other transversal.
12. Let
be a triangle. If a line is parallel to
and cuts
in the ratio
, then it also cuts
in the
same ratio, (and converse).
13. If two triangles
and
are similar, then their sides are proportional, in order, (and converse).
14. In a right-angled triangle the square of the hypotenuse is the sum of the squares of the other two sides.
15. If the square of one side of a triangle is the sum of the squares of the other two, then the angle opposite the
first side is a right angle.
16. For a triangle, base times height does not depend on choice of base.
17. A diagonal of a parallelogram bisects the area.
18. The area of a parallelogram is the base by the height.
19. The angle at the centre of a circle standing on a given arc is twice the angle at any point of the circle standing
on the same arc.
Corollary 2: All angles at points of a circle, standing on the same arc, are equal (and converse).
Corollary 3: Each angle in a semi-circle is a right angle.
Corollary 4: If the angle standing on a chord
at some point of the circle is a right angle, then
is a
diameter.
Corollary 5: If
is a cyclic quadrilateral, then opposite angles sum to
,(and converse).
20. (i) Each tangent is perpendicular to the radius that goes to the point of contact.
(ii) If
lies on the circle , and a line through
is perpendicular to the radius to , then is a tangent to .
Corollary 6: If two circles share a common tangent line at one point, then the two centres
and that point are collinear.
21. (i) The perpendicular from the centre to a chord bisects the chord.
(ii) The perpendicular bisector of a chord passes through the centre.
–27–
1.08 Constructions
1. Bisector of a given angle, using only compass and straight edge.
2. Perpendicular bisector of a segment, using only compass and straight edge.
3. Line perpendicular to a given line , passing through a given point not on .
4. Line perpendicular to a given line , passing through a given point on .
5. Line parallel to given line, through given point.
6. Division of a segment into
equal segments, without measuring it.
7. Division of a segment into any number of equal segments, without measuring it.
8. Line segment of given length on a given ray.
9. Angle of given number of degrees with a given ray as one arm.
10. Triangle, given lengths of three sides.
11. Triangle, given
data.
12. Triangle, given
data.
13. Right-angled triangle, given the length of the hypotenuse and one other side.
14. Right-angled triangle, given one side and one of the acute angles (several cases).
15. Rectangle, given side lengths.
16. Circumcentre and circumcircle of a given triangle, using only straight edge and compass.
17. Incentre and incircle of a given triangle, using only straight-edge and compass.
18. Angle of
without using a protractor or set square.
19. Tangent to a given circle at a given point on the circle.
20. Parallelogram, given the length of the sides and the measure of the angles.
21. Centroid of a triangle.
22. Orthocentre of a triangle.
–28–
Key Learnings
Steps I will take
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–29–
Notes:
–30–
Notes:
–31–
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