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LESSON PLAN FOR INTRO TO CALCULUS

Topic: Finding the value that makes a function continuous


Grade Level: 11 to 13
th th

Date: 3/29/17

Common Core Standards Addressed:


CCSS.Math.Practice.MP3 Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of
others.
CCSS.Math.Practice.MP5 Use appropriate tools strategically.
CCSS.Math.Practice.MP6 Attend to precision.
CCSS.Math.Content.HSF.IF.A.2
Use function notation, evaluate functions for inputs in their domains, and interpret
statements that use function notation in terms of a context.

Aim: How can we find values that make functions continuous?

Objectives: By the end of the lesson, the students should be able to


1. determine the value that makes a given function continuous (problem solving/
procedural)
2. explain what makes the function continuous (conceptual)
3. explain why the left and right limits must be set equal to each other and how that
relates to continuity (conceptual)

Prior Knowledge:
Students should know what a limit is and how to evaluate limits, specifically evaluating
limits of piecewise-defined functions using direct substitution. They should also know
how to determine if a function is continuous at a given point by using the continuity test.

Possible student misconceptions about the content of the lesson:


Students may think that piecewise-defined functions cant be continuous and that they
must contain an open circle for some x-value.
Students may not think its possible to find a constant when both pieces of a piecewise
function contain the same constant to solve for.

Material/Equipment:
SMARTBoard
Chalk board
Handouts

Vocabulary:
Limit If the values of f(x) can be made as close as we like to L by making x sufficiently
close to a (but not equal to a), then we write
limxa f(x)=L
Which is read the limit of f(x) as x approaches a is L.

One-sided limit- If the values of f(x) can be made as close as we like to L by making x
sufficiently close to a but greater than a, then we write
limxa+ f(x)=L
which is read the limit of f(x) as x approaches a from the right is L. Similarly, if the
values of f(x) can be made as close as we like to L by making x sufficiently close to a but
less than a, then we write
limxa- f(x)=L
which is read the limit of f(x) as x approaches a from the left is L.

Continuity - A function f is continuous at x = x if


0 exists and is f(x ).
0

Do Now/Start-up Task:
Determine if the following piecewise-defined function is continuous at x=2:
f(x) = { -3, x<2
{2x-3, x2

Motivation:

Present the slide that says What value of A will make the following function
continuous? and ask students and ask students:
- How do we know a function is continuous?
-We see there is a variable we must determine, how might we determine that
value, using what we know of continuity?
- Is there a way that we can determine what value of A will make this function
continuous?
- How did we determine if the function was continuous in the homework?
- So how do you think we should approach this problem?

Development and Instructional Activities:


Greet students, have slide with do now, homework, and aim up, and then have
them start the do now while some students come to the board to put their work
and answers up to last nights homework. Have a student put the do now up as
well.
Go over homework by having students explain their work and allow students to
ask them questions. Do the do now as a class allowing the student to explain their
work. During the homework review, ask:
-What did we have to do to determine if a function was continuous? or how
do we know that the function is continuous/not continuous?
-Why do we need to determine f(c)? And why does it have to equal the limit
as x approaches c? What is the relationship between f(c) and the limit as x approaches
c?
During the do now ask:
-Why do we take the limit as x approaches 2 from both the left and
right side?
Present the next slide that says What value of A will make the following function
continuous? and ask students:
- How do we know a function is continuous?
-We see there is a variable we must determine, how might we determine that
value, using what we know of continuity?
- Is there a way that we can determine what value of A will make this function
continuous?
- How did we determine if the function was continuous in the homework?
- So how do you think we should approach this problem?
Start working on it together as a class and ask the following:
- How do we know that we need to make x approach 3 for our limit?
- Now that we found the limits as x approaches 3 from both the left and right
sides, how do we determine A?
- Why do we set the answers to both limits equal to each other?
Have students try the next problem on the next slide on their own. Have a few
students state their steps as I write it on the board. Ask:
-How should we approach this?
Go to last slide and distribute the worksheet to students. Allow them to work
together with the person next to them. Tell students that if they are stuck or
uncertain with their answer to ask their peer or compare answers. Tell them that
when they are done with each problem, to exchange their paper with their peer
and to look over the peers paper to see where they would receive points off if this
was on a test. Give about 10 minutes to work on them
Start allowing students to come up to the board to share their work. Have the
students explain what they did.
End the class by asking the following questions :
- How did we find the missing value in a piecewise function?
-Why did we set the left and right limit equal to each other?
-How do we know that the function is continuous?
If time permits, I will distribute an exit slip to students.

Assessment:
During homework review, 2 students will share their work and answers to the class. Also
a student will put up the do now question. I will be asking students questions to assess
their understanding and walk around as they are doing the problems on the worksheet, as
well as the one that I have them try on their own. 3 students will present their work and
answers to the class. There will be an exit slip given to students at the end if time permits.

Summary:
1. How do we find the missing value in a piecewise function?
2. How do we know that the function is continuous?
3. Why do we set the left and right limits equal to each other? How does that relate to
continuity?

Homework:
Review Sheet