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The purpose of this activity is to reinforce the concept of function and the use of functional notation rather than to teach the concepts. This lab looks at input/output pictures to emphasize that a function has only one output for every input even through the output need not be unique. Using functional notation, students determine both range and domain values from a graph and then do the same for a variety of given functional equations. The real world applications include a piecewise function (cell phone costs) and require the student to find a variety of values as well as determining realistic domains.
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If students have not seen rational functions, question #7 can be eliminated.
Follow Up/ Discussion Questions:
* Have the students calculate their own cell phone rates against that of a competitor.
* Discuss why mathematicians prefer functions to relations.