So a bonus on an Algebra 2 test I had was “A baseball diamond is a square with sides of 90 feet. It is 60′ 6″ to from the pitcher’s mound to home plate (part of a diagonal). How far is it from the pitcher’s mound to second base (the rest of the diagonal)?”
Out of my 61 students…15 tried, one got it. Sort of. He wrote the whole Pythagorean Theorem to find the length of the diagonal, got to c^2 = 16200…scribbled it out and wrote “120 – 60.5 = 59.5” and put a circle around it. It was a bonus, so I couldn’t give him partial credit. So close! I get a lot of that..I see the correct work erased or scribbled out, and then a shorter, but much more incorrect, attempt at the solution written in its place. Blah. Have confidence in your abilities, people!