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MemberJune 15, 2020 at 2:32 pm
The concept I decided to focus on for this assignment is a major one in algebra and pre-algebra and has to do with student’s basic understanding of how functions work. The Lesson Goal is “understand that a function assigns to each x-value (independent variable) exactly one y-value (dependent variable)…” Traditionally I’ve used mapping diagrams, sets of ordered pairs, the vertical line test, etc. and still a number of kids get the meaning of functions backwards. What I’d like to use is the analogy of a Coke machine. Here’s how students might progress through it.
With a vending machine you put something in and get something out.
When you press Coke, you should get Coke.
I can tell whether or not the machine is working based on whether or not my selection (input) matches what I get out (output).
When you press Coke, you should get Coke, but if you always get Sprite instead, it doesn’t mean the machine is not functioning, it could just mean someone put in Sprite where Coke belonged.
A function is where I get one output for each input, whether or not it was the output I originally expected.