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On Teaching Trigonometry: Angles and the Right Triangle

Note: Thoughts expressed in this article are solely those of the author(s). Any advice given in this article may not work in all situations.  


SUMMARY: We talk about how to start introducing your students to the trigonometry of the right triangle and to remind them of the importance of practice.


By now, many of your students may be all excited about trigonometry. You’ve managed to persuade them that it is worth to put the efforts to comprehend the technicalities that you will explain to them. But you will also need to remind them of the importance of prerequisite knowledge. To effectively communicate the technicalities to your students, you will need to make some assumptions about their knowledge of some facts. If you choose not to do that, you may run into complications to explain basic results, such as \(1/\sqrt{3}\) is equal to \(\sqrt{3}/3\). That they know some algebra and geometry probably is a safe assumption. If your students use a textbook, facts abou...

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