Practice quadratics with math centers. At each center, a guide sheet leads students through a new concept. Then, task cards provide practice. Answers for task cards are provided.
Overview of Centers
Center 1: Finding the Vertex
Students use the formula for axis of symmetry to find the vertex. They also think about what the vertex means for real world situations.
Center 2: Observations on the Graphing Calculator
Students practice entering equations into a graphing calculator and finding the vertex and intercepts.
Center 3: Finding the Zeros by Factoring
Students use their factoring skills to find the x-intercepts of quadratic functions.
Center 4: Finding Zeros by Completing the Square
Students use the method of completing the square to find the x-intercepts of quadratic functions.
Center 5: Finding Zeros using the Quadratic Formula
Students use the quadratic formula to find the x-intercepts of quadratic functions.
Center 6: Throwing Stuff and Dropping Stuff
Students see how quadratic functions can be used to model items thrown or dropped. They match stories, equations, and graphs.
Center 7: Parent Function
Students see the parent function of quadratics and experiment to see how changing the equation changes the graph.
Center 8: What’s the Difference?
Students find the second difference of quadratic tables of values and use it to distinguish quadratic and linear functions.
Before the centers, it will be helpful to introduce students to situations that are not linear. Students need to know how to build a table of values from quadratic equations. Students should have a basic of idea of know how to factor quadratic equations and completing the square. (If completing the square is not part of your curriculum, you can leave Center 4 out.)
Students do not need to proceed through the centers in order.
Divide the class into groups of about 4 students. At each center, they should read through the guide sheet and work the problems together on their own paper. Then, they can pass out the task cards and practice.
Each center will take about 20 minutes.
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