My Algebra 1 students just recently finished learning to graph horizontal and vertical lines. For this, I used, as before, the mnemonic device – HOY VUX.

## What does HOY VUX stand for?

H – Horizontal Line

O – Zero Slope

Y – Graph Crosses the Y-Axis

V – Vertical Line

U – Undefined Slope

X – Graph Crosses the X-Axis

## Introducing HOY VUX

HOY VUX has always reminded me of those word puzzles that stand for a common phrase. Like last year, I gave some of these to my students to figure out before we jumped into the math part of the day’s lesson.

Surprisingly, my students weren’t as familiar with these as I expected. They also weren’t quite as competitive as I had anticipated.

That’s okay. I know how to fix that.

Jolly Rancher Bribery. First person to raise their hand and give the correct answer gets a jolly rancher.

Just when I thought my students were about to get the hang of these puzzles, I put up this one.

None of my Algebra 1 classes were able to figure it out.

One of my student’s answer to this one made me laugh. The answer is “Excuse Me.” However, one of my students interpreted it as “Execute Me.” Want more laughs? Check out my posts on Things Teenagers Say.

After going through about 7 or so more puzzles, I put up the letters HOY VUX. I pretended it was a puzzle, and I waited to see what my students would make of it.

In one class, students started arguing about what language it was written in. Apparently, it must be a German word! After listening to their debate for a little while, I told my students that I needed to apologize. This wasn’t actually a puzzle at all. This would be our lesson for the day.

Last year’s HOYVUX foldable worked fine, but I knew I wanted to change it up somehow this year. First, I’ll show you last year’s notebook page. Then, I’ll show you the changes I made for this year.

I was inspired by Jan’s post about HOY VUX at Equation Freak. I loved how she had arranged her interactive notebook page so that the HOY notes were written horizontally and the VUX notes were written vertically. I decided to take her layout and turn it into a foldable.

This may not have been my brightest idea.

First, I had students cut out the templates for their foldables.

Next, I showed students which lines to cut on to form their flaps.

I highlighted the cut-lines for you above. Here’s the picture I drew for my students on the SMART Board.

It’s not pretty, but it got the job done.

We labeled the outside flaps HOY and VUX. The corner rectangle contains notes on when to use HOY and when to use VUX.

Remember when I said this wasn’t my brightest idea? Oh, my students were plenty impressed with the fact that HOY was written horizontally and VUX was written vertically. It was fun to see students realize the connection and remark, “I see what you did there!”

Remember when I said this wasn’t my brightest idea? Oh, my students were plenty impressed with the fact that HOY was written horizontally and VUX was written vertically. It was fun to see students realize the connection and remark, “I see what you did there!”

In all three sections of Algebra 1, I had at least one student exclaim to the class that we had just made a gun-shaped foldable. They boys were soon holding their foldables up to one another and pretending to shoot each other. “Look! You even gave us a trigger!” Yeah. That was definitely NOT what I intended.

Here is the inside of the notes:

We also created a small poof booklet to practice graphing horizontal and vertical lines with.

Inside, there are 6 equations for students to practice graphing. Students are asked to identify if the equation falls into the category of HOY or VUX. Then, they have to say which axis the graph will cross and where it will cross that axis.

The file for this booklet has been uploaded below. If you want more information on how to fold this style of booklet, check out this post. The instructions are written for assembling a booklet to practice finding slope and intercepts, but the steps will be the same.

Here’s a look at the completed page.

Other than the fact that my students think the foldable looks like a gun, I’m really liking the changes that I made to this page.

Unknown

Monday 4th of December 2017

Haha my teacher used this too! Glad I found it, I forgot my HOY VUX paper at school!

ari

Friday 9th of December 2016

I am a student and I came across your blog! We are working on a project about HOY and VUX and this definitely helped our group become very creative! Thanks!

Unknown

Saturday 22nd of February 2014

HOY VUX (even your earlier version, which my coteacher and I just used) is so awesome. Grading quizzes on Friday, after using INBs for the first time, including your HOY VUX foldable, our students have a MUCH better grasp of vertical and horizontal lines. Thanks!

Type-A MathLand

Saturday 22nd of February 2014

I'm definitely going to use your poof booklet on...Tuesday! Great timing =).

I'm going to do a post on my functions unit soon. In a similar thing to your "gun" issue...I personally love the "DIX ROY" but my students have some issues with the first part...so I made it "DIXI ROYD" and added Independent Variable and Dependent variable to the end.

A day in the life, right?

Nancy in Indiana

Saturday 22nd of February 2014

Kids will make a gun out of just about anything. I remember my son went to a preschool that was very adamant about no toy weapons and peaceful play and all that, but the boys (it was almost always boys) made guns or lasers or something to shoot out of legos, or wooden blocks or Knex.

Sarah Carter (@mathequalslove)

Sunday 23rd of February 2014

Very true!