Zero and negative number indices will be taught this year. Students will also learn to express numbers in negative and positive powers of 10. Consumer arithmetic will be introduced by calculations involving earning, spending and simple interest. Also introduced this year is application of index laws to simplifying algebraic expressions. Introduction to coordinate geometry involving determination of line gradients and graphs of linear and non-linear equations. In statistics, cumulative frequency and its uses will be introduced. Other new topics in year 9 maths include studying rhombuses, kites and trapeziums as well as measuring composite figures. Trigonometry topics will include finding angles of elevation and depression.
A common challenge this year is the notion of negative numbers. Together with expressing large numbers in powers of 10, some students may initially find it hard to grasp the idea of numbers on the other side of zero or numbers so inordinately large or small that they need scientific notations to record. Another point of difficulty is composite trigonometry.
At the end of year 9 maths, students should be able to use index laws to simplify arithmetic expressions, and algebraic expressions as well as expressing very large and small numbers using scientific notations. Furthermore, students should have:
Learnt theoretical probabilities and relative frequencies
Be familiar with linear and non-linear relationships and graphs
Be able to construct cumulative frequency tables and graphs
Be able to calculate perimeters and areas of quadrilaterals and composite figures
Apply trigonometry to solve problems involving angles of elevation and depression
It is important that your child have a good foundation of consumer arithmetic at the end of year 9 maths. Understanding index laws is also important seeing at it is useful for algebraic and arithmetic expressions. Frequency tables are another important concept to ensure your child is familiar with, and of course trigonometry.
The importance of algebra should also be stressed here. Although algebra is not a new topic anymore, its use will be required in a variety of other topics such as geometry and trigonometry. Without knowing how to solve basic equations, for example, your child won’t fare too well in a trigonometry test. This will be a continuing pattern and as such it is absolutely crucial that your child is able to cross-contextualise thier knowledge of numbers and algebra.
When getting a tutor this year, look out for one who can provide your child not only with ample time and practice questions but also one who can use everyday experiences to explain topics, especially consumer arithmetic and statistics. As maths becomes more complex and abstract, relating to the real world can be challenging but will serve to enhance comprehension and boost interest in the subject.
Year 9 maths presents a considerable shift in the way students perceive numbers. Grasping negative numbers and expressing large and small numbers in scientific notations can pose a big challenge to students this year.
Providing everyday problems to help your child learn the concepts in consumer arithmetic, statistics and trigonometry will help a lot. Getting a capable tutor is another way of ensuring your child understand every topic of Year 9 maths.
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