Day 61 – Function Machine Project

My 6th graders started on a “Function Machine Project”.  This project culminates our Patterns and Functions chapter, and is a nice way to lead into Thanksgiving!  In groups of 4-5 they first come up with a function.  With that function, there are various roles that need to be played out:

  1. Artist – Responsible for creating an image/illustration/3D creation of a function machine
  2. Mathematician – Create an input/output table based on the function.  At least 10 inputs are needed.
  3. Grapher – Responsible for creating a clear and accurate graph of the function, using the coordinates from the table.
  4. Writer – Creates a detailed, written description of the function machine.  They will creatively explain what happens to the inputs to get the outputs.

In the end, they are all responsible for the final project.

I showed my students examples from last year and they were excited to get started! Today was a lot of discussion, planning, and rough drafting. They used again to check their tables and graphs.  This was much easier than having me check all of their work!  [More about Desmos here.]




Lots of students plan to create actual machines. I also saw lots of ideas related to this:image_4!

Input/output – it makes sense!


About Gretchen Simmerson

Middle School math teacher living in Austin, Texas.
This entry was posted in Algebra, Math Projects and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Day 61 – Function Machine Project

  1. Reblogged this on teachingwithcandy and commented:
    This is a relatively simple idea, but would undoubtedly hook any class of students.

  2. Pingback: Day 62 Function Machine continued | 180 Math Days

  3. Pingback: Day 63,64, 65 – Function Machines Complete! | 180 Math Days

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s