Education Technology

Ball Bounce

Activity Overview

Students collect data for a bouncing ball using a CBR connected to their calculator.  Consecutive ball bounces are modelled using combinations of translational, intercept and standard form of a quadratic equation. Each student has their own data so each student’s working and answers will be unique making it the ideal assessment task!

Objectives

Explore the connection between algebraic and graphical representations of relations such as simple quadratics, circles and exponentials using digital technology as appropriate.

Vocabulary

  • Quadratic
  • Parabola
  • Coefficients
  • Translation
  • Dilation
  • Simultaneous

About the Lesson

Students collect data for a bouncing ball using a CBR. The data is generally amazing and the corresponding quadratic equations generally provide an excellent fit. Students use the translational, intercept and standard form of a parabola and discuss which method was easiest and which method provided the best fit for the data. A single CBR is sufficient to run this activity for the entire class. As students are engaged in a practical activity the experience is quite memorable.  Students generally strive for the best equation fit possible and therefore spend time rehearsing translations and intercept concepts not because they have to, but because the want to!