Stop-Motion Parametrics

The title says it all.  We just started Parametric equations today (it’s our block today, so I get my Precal students for an hour and a half), and I was fretting last night about how to make Parametrics more fun, when I saw a video on Colossal (awesome website) which used a stop-motion and thought “Hey, we have iPads–we can totally do this!”.

So after teaching the students what a parametric equation is (and giving them some cool examples), I showed them a cool stop-motion video (I couldn’t find the same video on Colossal, so I found another one on Colossal…), and asked them to make their own video based on their own parametric equation.  The results were awesome!! (See below)

For this project they just had to find an interesting parametric equation, write down the equation, a table, and a graph, and then submit their video using Google Drive. I recalled from previous experience that there is almost no other way to share pictures and videos from a class-set of iPads (non-personalized). Fortunately, last time, I was able to create a Google Drive account for the class, and they were each able to upload, rename, and reogranize their videos so that next class we’ll be able to watch each other’s videos and go “ooh” and “ahh”.  Below is a photo of a group’s work to match their video:

The app they used was iMotion HD (yes, it’s free!) and it is so intuitive that all my students were able to use it very easily (the stumbling block was the math, not the technology, as it should be).  The best part was how quickly students figured out how to make the video (and it looked cool!) after they created the graph.  In the app, there are a few options, such as changing the frame-rate once you’ve recorded the video, or triggering the photo button through use of sound, timer, or remote (requires another iDevice).  This is one lesson that I will definitely be doing next year!