Education Technology

How Far Can You Jump?

Published on 06/09/2008

Activity Overview

The activity integrates both mathematical and scientific concepts. Students try to determine if there is a correlation between their height and the horizontal distance they are able to jump (from a standing position).

Before the Activity

Students should be familiar with scatterplots and how to use their calculators to graph them. Also, students should understand manipulated and responding variables (also referred to as independent and dependent variables).

During the Activity

Students will be exploring if there is a correlation between a student's height and the horizontal distance they can jump (from standing).

  • First have each student measure their height (in centimeters).
  • Next each student needs to jump forward from a position marked on the floor (using a line) and that distance is measured. Discuss control variables that need to be considered for our data collection. For example, students need to stand behind the line before they jump and the distance is measured from the back of the student’s shoes to the line.
  • The list of controlled variables should be generated with the students. Once students have collected their data, they should submit it via the Activity Center form that is attached.
  • Each student will submit their individual point (with Height going to L1 and Distance Jumped going to L2) and these points can then be aggregated and sent to the class so they can then graph the data to see if there is a correlation.
  • To send out the list of all the points, stop the previous activity.
  • Next, choose to contribute lists and click on the Configure button. Under Main Settings, click on ‘Choose from data sets”, add to data set 1 (L1, L2).
  • Do not allow students to resubmit lists and students will start with existing activity lists.
  • Ask students to not touch their calculators when you are sending the data.
  • Once the aggregated data has been sent, stop the activity.
  • Have students exit TI-Navigator and graph the data.
  • Access the Stat Plot and graph a scatterplot of Height (L1) versus Distance Jumped (L2).
  • Remind students to use an appropriate window setting (or conversely, provide them with the window setting you prefer).
  • Have students analyze the data to see if there is a positive, negative or no correlation based on the data.
  • After the Activity

    Discuss the different types of correlation. Consider what theoretically one would expect, versus the experimental data. Discuss potential sources of error.