## Reflection: Developing a Conceptual Understanding Operation with Vectors - Section 3: Scalar Multiplication

At this point, students want to know when vectors are used.  I bring up some examples. One is about the wind.  When the weather person says, "the wind is blowing out of the north at 5 mph," you have encountered a vector.  This example helps students to appreciate how vectors play a role in understanding daily life.

During my class, one student made a great connection to the wind example.  She told me about an Android or iphone app called Paper Toss. In this game, a person throws paper into a trash can. The game is made more challenging by a fan that blows at different rates and directions. In class, she explained how what you need to do to make a basket in a way that helped the students to understand how understanding of vectors helps to solve the problem of throwing the paper into the can.

Another example to use is the context of a boat crossing a flowing river.  Many students understand that if a boat on a river wants to cross the river on a perpendicular line it must navigate upriver in order to maintain its course.  It is important to make these connections so that students understand the importance of vectors.

Need context
Developing a Conceptual Understanding: Need context

# Operation with Vectors

Unit 11: Vectors and Complex Numbers
Lesson 3 of 11

## Big Idea: By using graphs and reasoning vector operations will be developed.

Print Lesson
Standards:
Subject(s):
Math, Precalculus and Calculus, vector, adding vectors, Computer application
45 minutes

### Katharine Sparks

##### Similar Lessons

###### Airplane! - An Introduction to Vectors
Big Idea: Finding the magnitude and direction of an airplane's path will help launch the concept of vectors.
Favorites(13)
Resources(24)
Troy, MI
Environment: Suburban

###### An Inquiry Lab for Angled Projectiles
High School Physics » 2-D Kinematics
Big Idea: Bang! Students use Nerf dart guns to explore projectile motion.
Favorites(2)
Resources(20)
Scottsdale, AZ
Environment: Suburban