I really like what Dan Meyer & others have developed in the 3 Acts lessons. I created my first video this past weekend, and it involves me heating up a cup of something (coffee?) in the microwave, sipping it, burning my mouth, and then sticking a thermometer in it next to a timer. My main concern is that the video is too long right now. I think it will capture their attention (we’ll see), and I’m actually expecting a wide range of questions, which will be great for sequel(s) and further exploration.
The question I’m hoping to answer is “How long before Mr. Newman can drink the coffee?” but I am definitely willing to take it in any number of directions, so long as we’ll be graphing temperature vs time and can talk about functions & graphs.
Here’s the info I’ll give them if they request it. (I’ll give them one slide at a time, and only as they demand it!)
And if they keep digging/begging, I’ll show them how to find the exponential function of best fit. We’ll see if we can get into why it should be exponential… it is only the first week of school after all.
Of course, the third act should show rather than tell the students that their answer was right or wrong. Here’s all the data I took.