ALEX Lesson Plan


I'm Walking Through Functions

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Michelle Russell
System: Florence City
School: Florence High School
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 33173


I'm Walking Through Functions


The students will participate in a gallery walk of functions with their group.  The students will identify the graphs and list the key features of the graphs.  The graphs will include square root, cube root, piecewise, step, and absolute value functions.  The key features could include the x and y intercepts, domain and range, symmetry, and end behavior. 

This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
MA2015 (9-12) Precalculus
18. Graph functions expressed symbolically, and show key features of the graph, by hand in simple cases and using technology for more complicated cases.* [F-IF7]
a. Graph square root, cube root, and piecewise-defined functions, including step functions and absolute value functions. [F-IF7b]
b. Graph polynomial functions, identifying zeros when suitable factorizations are available, and showing end behavior. [F-IF7c]
c. (+) Graph rational functions, identifying zeros and asymptotes when suitable factorizations are available, and showing end behavior. [F-IF7d]
d. Graph exponential and logarithmic functions, showing intercepts and end behavior, and trigonometric functions, showing period, midline, and amplitude. [F-IF7e]

Local/National Standards:

Look for and make use of structure #7 Mathematical Practice Standards

Primary Learning Objective(s):

Identify square root, piecewise, cube root, step and absolute value functions and list key features of these graphs.

Additional Learning Objective(s):

This is a student led lesson designed to encourage student inquiry and allow students to collaborate with their classmates to recognize common graphs and list their key features.

This lesson could be used as a review at the conclusion of a unit or at the beginning of a unit to assess student understanding.

 Preparation Information 

Total Duration:

31 to 60 Minutes

Materials and Resources:

Enlarged graphs for the gallery walk (for suggestions see attached word document Gallery Walk


Technology Resources Needed:

Students will use their iPads to access a short Khan Academy quiz (optional- if students do not have iPads the teacher can display the quiz on the digital projector)

digital projector

graphing calculators (optional)



Prerequisite learning- the student should be able to identify and list the key features of a quadratic function.

The teacher will prepare the graphs for the gallery walk.

The teacher will preview the quizzes on the Khan Academy website.

Major concept to be taught- identify and list key features of absolute value, step, cubic, piecewise, and square root functions.


1.  Introductory Activity- Quickwrite  y = ( x- 4 )2 +2.  Students will determine the key features of this function, such as intercepts, domain and range, symmetry, and end behavior.  Students will explain how they found the key features.

2.  Gallery Walk- Students will be divided into five different groups, if possible.  Students will spend approximately 5-10 minutes at each graph.  The students will work collaboratively to identify the graph and list the key features of the graph.  As the students move through the gallery the teacher will observe the students and listen to their conversations to assess their understanding of the functions.

3.  After the students have completed their gallery walk each group will be assigned to a graph.  The group will then "report out" their findings.

4.  Students will use their iPads to take two short quizzes on the Khan academy website. If students do not have an Ipad the teacher will post the quiz for the entire class to discuss the questions.  The quizzes will assess students on absolute value functions and piecewise funtions. The links for the quizzes are listed here:

Khan piecewise function quiz

Khan absolute value quiz

**Some files will display in a new window. Others will prompt you to download.

Assessment Strategies

Quickwrite sample question: y = ( x- 4 )2 +2. Students will determine the key features of this function, such as intercepts, domain and range, symmetry, and end behavior. Students will explain how they found the key features.

Teacher will listen to group discussions as the students participate in the gallery walk

Groups will report out at the end of the gallery walk

Two short quizzes on Khan academy


Students who have already mastered the Primary Learning Objective can apply that concept to rational functions.  Students can watch a video tutorial on this topic on the Khan Academy website.  Please see the link below:

Khan tutorial rational functions



Khan tutorial piecewise functions   This video tutorial can provide extra assistance for students who continue to struggle with piecewise functions.

Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

Presentation of Material Environment
Time Demands Materials
Attention Using Groups and Peers
Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior
Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.