Investigating Functions with a Ferris Wheel: Part 1

Investigating Functions With A Ferris Wheel

coauthored with Peter Hornbein (@phornbein1) and Sumbal Azeem, appeared in the December 2016/January 2017 issue of NCTM’s Mathematics Teacher journal.

This winter, Max Ray-Riek (@maxmathforum) and Annie Fetter (@MFAnnie) converted my Geometer’s Sketchpad sketches into Web Sketchpad Activities, freely available through NCTM Illuminations:

Investigating Functions with a Ferris Wheel: Distance vs. Height

Screen Shot 2017-03-06 at 11.22.45 AM

Investigating Functions with a Ferris Wheel: Distance vs. Width

Screen Shot 2017-03-06 at 11.28.07 AM.png

A few quick notes to get started:

  • Click Animate Point to move the car around the Ferris wheel.
  • Click the action buttons to show/hide features and move between pages.
  • Drag the Active Point (the car on the Ferris wheel) to control the animation.

Who might use these activities?

I used these activities with 9th grade students in Algebra 1, but they could be appropriate for students with different kinds of mathematical experience.

Want more?

In upcoming blog posts, I’ll be sharing ideas for using these Web Sketchpad activities.

What do you think?

How have you used these Web Sketchpad activities with your students? Let me know in the comments, or let me know on Twitter @HthrLynnJ.


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