Trig Unit 4: Unit Circle Interactive Notebook

Unit 4: Unit Circle

pg 41 Our previous unit was right triangle trig so I used this same "flippable" to introduce the reciprocal functions so that students would see the connection. And at the top we drew how right triangle trig now transfers to the unit circle.

pg 42 I used the CamScanner app to take pictures of the textbook that we used for the RHP practice.

pg 42-43 Quadrantal angles followed nicely from reciprocal functions. These two page ideas came from here.

I let students make up their own mnemonic and they came up with All Students Talk Crap. lol

pg 45 This idea comes once again from the fabulous Shireen. We did reference triangles all the way around the unit circle. We drew degrees on the circle itself and wrote radians on each triangle. We use our special triangles index card from unit 1 to write the leg lengths.

pg 46 This is a modified worksheet sent to me by my trig mentor Meg Craig. On the inside we first went through and labeled the quadrant for each problem. Then we went through and labeled it positive or negative (I'll be switching step 2 and 3 next time). Then we determined the reference angle for each and used the chart on the outside to find the answer.

pg 47 The Unit Circle in all it's glory. We filled in all the degrees first. Then I taught them the hand trick to start filling in the ordered pairs. I think the radians were actually the hardest part. Over time we used the chart from page 46 (sin/cos/tan of 0-90 and the unit circle itself more than the hand trick to memorize the values.

Students figured out their own patterns to help them remember. My favorite was what they noticed for radians. In the second quadrant, it is one 'slice' away from halfway/180/pi. So the fractions are all one away from the denominator 2/3, 3/4, 5/6. In the third quadrant they are one over so 4/3, 5/4, 7/6. And in the fourth quadrant they are almost double/360/2pi so double the denominator minus one: 5/3, 7/4, and 11/6. Hooray for patterns!

They had to fill in the entire unit circle without a calculator for part one of their test. Part two they had to fill in the sin/cos/tan of 0-90 chart and then use that chart to find the exact values of other degrees/radians all without a calculator.

Here are the files:


  1. For some reason, I can't get the files to download. When I click download, nothing happens.

    1. Yes, box.com says I have reached my bandwidth limit on downloads and that it was supposed to reset on October 1st. As you can see, it did not. If you leave your email and which files you want, I will email you the documents.

  2. Hi Elissa Thank you for sharing these resources. These would be very helpful to teachers teaching the unit circle.
    Your students are very lucky to have you!

  3. Elissa just letting you know one of the files (Concept 17 Quiz) on quadratics has also sneaked in here:)

  4. Elissa, I LOVE your unit circle stuff. I am teaching pre-calc for the 2nd time and have been looking for better ways to teach trig. I have been able to download all of your files, except the notebook files. Is there a way I could get them as well?

    1. Try downloading from this direct link. https://app.box.com/s/yupwu3eq0kaikyjyz1b1wsq250ln4n2e

      If that doesn't work, comment your email and I'll send them to you.

  5. Hi! I would love your Unit Circle Notebook files!

    My email is: julielynn_bourquin@dpsnc.net

    Thank you so much :)