Salmon spawning, pollution, lung volume are among the topics investigated in this real world application of polynomial functions.
Students work through 5 scenarios of in-context situations where polynomials functions are used. Students must solve for x and y intercepts and graph their functions without relying on a calculator. Factoring of higher order polynomials is assumed, as is long division or synthetic substitution.
Students find maximum values (optimization) and the knowledge of the power rule is assumed, although calculators could be used for students who have not yet been introduced to derivatives. No further derivative work is necessary although the chain rule, quotient rule and product rule could be used if students wish, but is not at all necessary.
Could be classwork, homework or an evaluation/assessment.
Full answers are written in a pdf file. Worksheet is a .doc file.
See my other application activities in Making Math Matter MMM.
A pdf preview of page 2 is available.