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Discussion: Traffic Jam Applet tool
Topic: Graphing in four quadrants-a tool search
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Subject:   Graphing in four quadrants-a tool search
Author: tackweed
Date: Oct 17 2004
Graphing in four quadrants-a tool search. Please let me know what can be added
to this.

Recently my classes completed an exercise designed to acquaint them with
graphing in four quadrants.  Since it is my intention to expose students to as
many resources as possible, I did a search through Math Tools to see what I
could find that would be appropriate for the subject and the students.

The search parameters were:

Math 7 - rectangular coordinate geometry - all quadrants

After reviewing the materials I discovered that there were additional resources
which would serve as good introductory materials and relate to what we had been
doing in the classroom - specifically, under 'Math 7 - rectangular coordinate
geometry - first quadrant.'

Arranging these in a lesson sequential order:

1)  Support Material: Introduction
to the Coordinate Plane and Coordinates Discussion.  This support document
introduce the coordinate plane as a dialogue between student and teacher. It
sets up the axis' as number lines and shows the division into quadrants. This
would supplement and serve as a review to an introductory lesson

1a)  Support Material: Lines,
Rays, and Planes.  This support document provides a lesson on what is a
coordinate plane and how you plot points and lines  on a coordinate plane. It
would provide a good supplement for students to check at home/in the library to
review the information covered in class. While not necessary to the development
of plotting in four quadrants, it is an interesting adjunct.

2) Simple Coordinates Game  (1st
Quadrant only). This interactive tool allows students to either determine the
coordinates of the plotted object or enter coordiantes to plot a point. All
coordinates are located in the first quadrant which relates to the graphing we
have done so far.

3)  Simple Maze Game (1st quadrant
only). This is an interactive game where the student moves the robot through the
minefield to reach the target. The robot moves by plotting the next goal point
as an ordered pair.

4) General Coordinates Game. This game
is the same game as 2) above. The difference is the plot can occur in any of the
four quadrants.
5)  Maze Game. This game is similar to
the Maze Game above,but now the robot may move through all four quadrants.

The culminating activity for the four quadrant plots is the Dot-to-Dot
picture which is a 3 part activity.

Part 1.

The guidelines for the dot-to-dot picture: Set up a piece of 1/4 inch square
graph paper with an x and y axis in the center.

1. Must have points in all 4 quadrants
2. Minimum of 30 points
3. Points must be in order and numbered. You cannot pick up the pencil and move
to another place.
4. Lines MUST change direction at a point (i.e., a staight line only has points
at the end - no intermediary points)
5. Retracing a line is allowed, but remember the line must change directions at
a point.

The picture must be something recognizeable. Some exclusions include:

no logos
no letters, initials, words
no robots or space aliens
no Christmas trees
no designs

Some acceptable designs might be vehicles, buildings, plants, animals, people
and cartoon type characters.  Sample set-up

Part 2.

On a separate sheet of paper, list the numbers of the dots and the ordered pair
which defines the dot. Be sure to do them in order!

Part 3.

The instructor collects the picutres and the lists of coordinates. The pictures
are set aside and the list of coordinates is shuffled and redistributed to the
class with a blank sheet of graph paper. Students are then to recreate the
picture from the coordinates.

There are tools available which can help the student to check his/her list of
coordinates and/or resolve any disputes as to whether a re-creation error. is
due to the author or the person recreating the drawing.

The best tool is

6) Ordered Simple Plot.  The ordered
simple plotter allows the student to enter the coordinate pairs in the order of
the drawing and it will plot the entered points thus revealing the accuracy of
the coordinates and/or the interpretation of the recreator. Students are
encouraged to use this tool to check their coordinates before they hand them

The major advantage of this tool is that it allows the student to enter the
coordinate pair in the form x,y which reinforces the notion of the coordinate

In the event that internet accessing computers are not available to the
students, there is an alternative procedure using Microsoft Excel.  The big
difference is that in Excel you need to establish x and y as two separate
columns.  Once the data is entered, you highlight the data in the x and y
columns and click on the chart wizard.

Next, select the chart type XY Scatterplot. From the sub-types select 'Scatter
with data points connected by lines' (straight with dots) then proceed to

Below is a set of data which you can cut and paste into as an example.

NOTE: Simple Plotter  Graphit   and  Data Flyer, While appearing to be
similar to tool 89 DO NOT connect the dots in the order plotted.


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