A great intro to linear graphing, functions, and slope based on the poem by best selling poet, Shel Silverstein. The poem describes the life of one tiny girl, Melinda Mae, who over the course of her life eats a whale.
Students will read the poem, then graph the weight of the whale over the course of Melinda's life. Then they will write a paragraph in which they decribe the graph with all of its dips and plateaus. This is one of those great activities that help students synthesize their understanding and connect math with life in a silly and fun way.
Students are encouraged to be as imaginative as they can, as long as the paragraph and graph are accurate to the poem, and each other.
Proper scaling and progression of the line are emphasized. In addition, students will need to think critically about the slope of the line they drew as they describe Melinda's life. They will need to start and stop the line at domain values that make sense with the poem.
Great for meeting the common core goals of integrating writing with math.
The directions and scoring rubric
A student handout for graphing and writing.