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Topic: Does step size really equal speed?
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Subject:   RE: Does step size really equal speed?
Author: I-Heng
Date: May 18 2007
I do think students are familiar enough with speed (cars!) to talk about running
3 feet per second vs. 2 feet per second, etc. and work directly with that.

The tool is a little confusing in that way, by offering "step size" as a
parameter and yet graphing against time (hence the origin of this discussion
thread).

But I would point out that when you say, why not just talk about "slope"...that
approach may gloss over the obvious-to-us-but-not-to-students fact
that the slope is the graphical representation of the speed (velocity,
actually).  This is a fundamental understanding that students need but don't
always have.

So I would encourage talking initially about the speed (the prior knowledge
concept), and through use of the tool and other work, bringing students to the
idea that the speed/velocity shows up in the graph as slope.

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