Making Predictions With Scatter Plots in the Real World
This Real World 3 Act Math Task will have students making predictions via interpolation and extrapolation using scatter plots and a line of best fit.
Related Math Topics:
Data management of two-variables including:
- making predictions between two-variables,
- creating scatter plots,
- classifying correlations as positive/negative and strong/weak, and
- interpolating and extrapolating using a line of best fit.
This task can be extended to linear relationship and equations by having students determine the equation of a line for the line of best fit to make predictions.
Act 1: Lighting the Candle
Students will watch act 1 and make interpolations and extrapolations related to how long it will take for the candle to burn to ____ cm tall or to completely burn out.
Act 2: Students Request Information
At this stage, students may be requesting more information, such as:
- how long was the candle before it was lit?
- how long did it take to get to half the size?
Here are some images that can also help when gradually releasing more information to your students:
Act 3: Compare Student Predictions to Reality
Sequel / Extensions
…we had a 26 cm candle with the same diameter as the last candle? How long would it take to burn out?
… the relationship between height of the candle and time was perfectly linear? (a perfectly straight line). What could the table of values and graph look like?
This 3 act math task can easily be extended to different situations including a larger/smaller candle, thicker candles and many other ideas that I’m sure you’ll think up as you prepare to use this task.
Added Monday April 14th, 2014
This activity is a great one to address the Understanding Characteristics of Linear Relations specific expectation from MPM1D – Principles of Mathematics, 9:
LR2.04 – determine the equation of a line of best fit for a scatter plot, using an informal process (e.g., using a movable line in dynamic statistical software; using a process of trial and error on a graphing calculator; determining the equation of the line joining two carefully chosen points on the scatter plot).
Click below to grab a math handout that has some of the given information and some area for students to work:
Please comment to let me know how it worked in your classroom!