Reflection: Intrinsic Motivation Cutting Conics - Section 2: Investigation: Cutting Conics


This is one of those lessons that just makes you smile and helps you remember why you love teaching so much… the kids! They were just so excited to complete this lesson and seemed really motivated to figure out the different conic sections. (Of course, I am sure the play dough helped with this a bit.)

Here are some interesting images that I captured of the lesson…

Cutting Conics, Promoting Conversations: This activity really got my students talking about the vocabulary. They were really scared to make the cuts and ruin the cone so they were sure to discuss the cuts and make sure everyone agreed before making them.

Cutting Conics, Interesting Misunderstanding: There were a few wrong cuts made so be sure to have extra cups on hand. This is how one of my students interpreted the second cut. She made a spiral.

Cutting Conics, Different Way to Complete Cut 4: I also loved seeing students get creative. As this student did with making his double napped cones. He didn’t follow the directions, but it worked for him.

Cutting Conics, Student Work: This is an example of one student’s completed worksheet. I like how he revised his answers from ovals to ellipses and from a pyramid to a parabola. I also liked his pictures.

  Intrinsic Motivation: Students Hard at Work
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Cutting Conics

Unit 6: Conic Sections
Lesson 1 of 13

Objective: SWBAT identify the four conic sections and how they are actually sections of a cone.

Big Idea: As an introduction to this unit, students actually cut cones to discover the four conic sections.

  Print Lesson
Math, Precalculus and Calculus, parabola, conic sections, circles, hyperbola, ellipse, PreCalculus, cross, Conic
  30 minutes
cutting conics promoting converstaions
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