After years of "teaching" students the rules of exponents, and having them never understand when you multiply, and when you add, and so forth, I changed to a discovery method for this topic, and I've had really good results.
I teach them the definition of an exponent, e.g. x^3 = x*x*x. We then write out an expression such as (x^3)(x^5) = (xxx)(xxxxx), and students quickly see that there are a total of 8 x's, or x^8.
I start out class with this 15-minute "mini-lesson," giving my students some basic examples of what today's lesson will be about. Once the mini-lesson is over, I have them get to work within their groups on this worksheet, and I circulate to make sure they are getting the purpose of the questions.
The file includes spiral review problems.
This worksheet is intended to be written on directly.
Please download the pdf preview file first, so you can see exactly what's included; the product file is a word document, which you may personalize for your students.
Immediately before this worksheet, I use the worksheet named 'Measures of Dispersion Spring 2014' (http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Measures-of-Dispersion-Spring-2014-1273259
), and immediately after this worksheet, I use the assessment named 'Algebra 1 Quiz Descriptive Statistics Spring 2014' (http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Algebra-1-Quiz-Descriptive-Statistics-Spring-2014-2-versions-2-pages-each-1273271