Reflection: Transitions Rate of Change - Section 2: Investigation

 

This was a great investigation for the students because they were investigating and discussing rate of change in contexts that they could understand.  Some students (about 6) were still having trouble coming up with the generalized formula for calculating rate of change and needed some scaffolding around this skill.  I continued to use the concept of "the constant value" as a way to adjust the rate to get a value in the table.  For example, in the "studying vs. grades" table, students could come up with a rate of change of 8.  From here, students would would see that if they studied for 1 hour they would have a grade of 60.  They knew that a correct equation would look like 60=8(1)+____.  Looking for this constant value that made the equation true helped them to write the final equation: y=8x+52.

I also liked this investigation because students naturally found unit rates as part of their work.  With real world application, more meaning is derived from a unit rate.  For example, in the "sprinting" table students could see that the sprinter traveled 50 meters in 10 seconds.  However, they naturally wanted to reduce this fraction to 5 meters every second.  This idea of reducing to a unit rate when possible will also make more abstract rate of change questions (such as those on the coordinate plane between random points) easier to understand.

  Investigation Reflection
  Transitions: Investigation Reflection
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Rate of Change

Unit 2: Linear Functions
Lesson 9 of 19

Objective: SWBAT determine the rate of change between two variables by examining tables of values.

Big Idea: Students will develop their understanding of rate of change by exploring real world contexts.

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Subject(s):
Math, Algebra, constant term, Graphing (Algebra), rate of change, y-intercept, constant rate of change, slopes
  40 minutes
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