Education Technology

Sinusoidal Modeling

Updated on 07/01/2014

Activity Overview

This lesson involves writing an equation to predict the average monthly temperature for a certain location based on past data.

Objectives

  • Students will input data, plot the data, and use parameter sliders to fit a curve to model the data with a sinusoidal model.
  • Students will use their knowledge of sine and cosine curves to write a sinusoidal equation to model the data.
  • Students will interpret the parameters of a sinusoidal model in terms of the context of the physical setting.
  • Students will make appropriate inferences about a physical setting based on a sinusoidal model.

Vocabulary

  • amplitude
  • frequency
  • parameters
  • period
  • sinusoidal curve

About the Lesson

This lesson involves writing an equation to predict the average monthly temperature for a certain location based on past data.
As a result, students will:

  • Discover that average monthly temperatures might vary sinusoidally over the course of a year.
  • Understand the meaning of the various parameters of a sinusoidal function in the context of this real world problem.
  • Make predictions about the temperatures, based upon their mathematical model.
  • Analyze how the solutions to an equation relate to the real-world situation modeled by the equation.