Use the Numb3rs activity "Parabolic Food Fight" along with TI Navigator and the TI-84 Plus to teach parabolic curve fitting. Given three points, explore ways to fit a curve to the desired points including solving systems of three equations, solving systems with matrices, and using a quadratic regression. Use the Activity Center to plot the points and encourage students to submit their equations to see if their curves fit.
Before the Activity
Each student should have access to TI-84 Plus.
During the Activity
Attached are step-by-step instructions on multiple strategies for parabolic curve fitting using the TI-84 Plus. Also attached is the Numb3rs activity "Parabolic Food Fight" upon which this activity is based.
After the Activity
Review student results and, as a class, discuss questions that appeared to be more challenging. Re-teach concepts as necessary.