## Tuesday, July 01, 2008

### Volume of Revolution Project

This past year I tried something new with my calculus students for the "volumes project" in the oh-my-goodness-what-to-do-after-the-exam phase of the year (closely linked to the eek-I-hate-giving-class-time-to-do-projects-and-can-they-waste-any-more-time phase of teaching calculus).

I did the project with the kids to see what was involved, and I told them it was the first time I'd done this, so we'd learn the pitfalls and tips and such together. I also was vague on how they should display the projects at the end. I said, "wow me" and "whatever you do, have a good reason for it" and "think of the best way to display it to use as a learning tool".

The general idea was that we'd all have the same starting 2-dimensional region (y = 4 - xx), and we'd each revolve it around a different axis of revolution, and thus each have different solids at the end.

She wowed me with her final presentation:
This is mine (I now realize I took the picture upside down). Hmmm, spaghetti/math-tool ... probably not too long lasting:

Before she started, she kept saying, "I want to make it into Saturn", so I guess she continued with her space theme:

He was so funny, "tell me what to do. tell me what to do." Me, "no. no. NO.". He finally came up with it himself:

1. Anonymous12:05 PM

Ultra neat! SUPER cool Tres pretty.
sam shah

2. Anonymous6:11 PM

Thanks, Sam :).

3. Anonymous9:17 AM

This stuff is gorgeous. But, what did the low end look like? Or was it all ok?

Jonathan

4. Anonymous10:28 AM

Yup, they basically all looked like these. I wasn't happy with the scale differences. We had to adjust for the thickness of the foam, so the x- and y- axes had different scales, and different students picked different ones. So even though we all had the same function, they were "distorted" from each other. ... but that's a minor thing.