At first, students could not think of any examples of inequalities in real life. With an example of  children as age < 13, however, they were soon off to name several. We even had a few fun digressions as we explored some "stories" behind the examples. Here are some of them:
  1. speed > 40 at school zones is speeding - somebody told a story of her granddad being booked for driving too slow (concept of minimum is important, too)
  2. senior age > 50, it brought a discussion that this is too young
  3. marrying age >= 16, too young again
  4. 13 <= teen <= 19 
  5. wins > 4 to qualify to next debating round - and a nod to one of the members of the debating team!

It soon became clear that inequalities are just as present in real life as equations are.A quick revision of step graphs showed the students that they have also seen the graphing of inequalities before.

Students were again reminded of the guiding principles regarding working with equations with the addition of:
  • with inequalities, multiplying or dividing by a negative number means reversing the sign

I believe the constant focus on the big picture with regards to equations is starting to pay off as the students are working more confidently.