Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Tool 7: Collaboration

Objective: Students will use proportional reasoning to calculate the height of unreachable objects around the school commons by measuring their real height, perceived height, and the object's perceived height.

Timeframe: September

Tools: Google Spreadsheet, Today's Meet

Students are presented with three tall objects from the commons: a column, roll down door, and a stair case. These are all items that are too tall to measure by hand. In the classroom the students record their heights using a measuring tape. In the commons, a student holds a ruler several feet away from the object and records a perceived height for this object. All the students in the group take turns standing next to the object and their perceived heights are measured as well. The numbers are used to calculate a real height for that object.

Students record data in a Google spreadsheet so they can see the results from other groups and other Algebra II classes. The calculations are compared with the original guesses. Today's Meet can be used before and after the experiment for students to compare their thoughts going to in to what actually happened. They can also discuss what problems they encountered and see if any other groups ran into the same issues and how everyone dealt with them.

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