January 17, 2014

Large Scale Graphing Lesson

We've been learning JavaScript, and a minimal understanding of graphing is quite helpful for writing the code, as you must assign each shape a location on a coordinate plane.  Hannah Jane has done some graphing in her time, but the boys had not and this whole telling the computer where you wanted your shape by giving it 2 numbers deal was really kind of blowing their minds.  Thus, we needed a graphing lesson pronto!

When you're little, everything is more fun when it's BIG!  So to make a graphing lesson gigantic, I moved the dining room table and used the tile floor as the coordinate plane.  After a short, introductory lecture, I pulled out a bag of expired gigantic marshmallows left over from camping season and we used those for our points.  I wrote the coordinate points on an index card and place a marshmallow on each one.  

To drive home the point of Order matters! I made sure that if there was a (7,2), there was also a (2,7) and so on.  I knew that someone would use the points out of order and then someone else would show up only to find a marshmallow waiting in their spot.  It's like I can read the future!  I happened and they all stood there and hashed out the details of which on needed to move on its way and which one belonged in that spot.  Love it when predictions pan out!

If you do this, make sure that you number the grout lines rather than the tiles.  When they move on to graph paper, if they number the squares instead of the lines, they will be forced to decide (and often inconsistently so) whether to draw the point on the line above or below the numbered space.  Grout lines!!!!

If you  have ideas for making little lessons gigantic, I'd love to hear them!  Happy graphing!

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