Sunday, December 14, 2008

Project Idea: Linear Functions Mini-Poster

My Algebra I students have been studying the basics of linear functions the past few weeks, and I wanted to tie everything together with one of my favorite types of projects: the mini-poster.

A mini-poster, as opposed to your typical poster, is made on a regular 8.5" by 11" piece of paper (unlined is best, but any regular paper at hand is fine). It can be scaled up or down as homework, a short in-class assignment, or a long term project. Whatever way you use it, the emphasis is less on making a pretty poster and more on what you need your kids to know. The topic of the poster is meant to be something on a small scale: one main idea that students must know.

In this case, I wanted students to recognize the "parts" of your average linear function: domain and range, independent and dependent variables, slope, y-intercept, etc. So their assignment was to create a linear function in slope-intercept form, label the parts from a list of given key words, and title their creation. I gave them a completed example on the directions they were given. In my class, it was assigned as homework.

This lesson should help you reach everyone in the classroom, especially students who are struggling and ELLs.

As with last week's simple slope activity, this handout is designed to be printed as one double-sided 1/2 size page to save paper: print 2 copies, and turn the second one to the opposite orientation of the original. Then make your copies double sided and cut in the middle.

The mini-poster is idea #1 from my book Ten Cheap Lessons, available on and other fine retailers.