This structured and humorous task begins by asking students to write and graph linear functions for data presented in a table. Students are asked to describe the transformations from the parent function. After comparing different pay schedules, students are asked to select the best one and to write a letter justifying their response. Students are then asked to complete and graph data tables for two non-linear functions (quadratic and rational) and to compare the linear and non-linear functions. Note: students do NOT need to be familiar with the equations for non-linear functions. Throughout the task, students are introduced to vocabulary:independent, dependent, discrete, continuous, domain, range, function notation, parent function, etc.
This Common Core aligned task would work well in an advanced 8th grade class or 9th grade class in the unit on functions and linear vs. non-linear relationships.