The Conic Sections in Polar Coordinates
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|David Arnold; Mathematics Dept., College of the Redwoods, CA|
|An interactive study of the polar form of the equation for a conic section, for readers familiar with polar coordinates and triangle trigonometry. This activity is also a vehicle for the introduction of the Geometer's Sketchpad, though no prior experience with the program is assumed. The focus-directrix definition of the conic section; how to create the basic sketch; finding the eccentricity; computing the radial length; transforming; dynamic geometry (see both branches of the hyperbola traced by dragging a point around the circumference of the circle); locus and animation; and further exploration.|
|Levels:||High School (9-12), College|
|Resource Types:||Lesson Plans and Activities, Tutorials, Geometer's Sketchpad|
|Math Topics:||Conic Sections and Circles, Coordinate Plane Geometry|
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