In A Heartbeat
Algebra
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Objective
Students will apply their knowledge of scatter plots to discover the correlation
between heartbeats per minute before and after aerobic exercise.
Overview of the Lesson
The teacher begins the lesson by engaging students in a discussion about the
characteristics of scatter plots. Next, an aerobic instructor shares basic information
about the heart with particular focus of the heart rate when the body is at rest and
the heart rate following exercise. Students discuss estimating their heart rate in
beats per minute (bpm). They discuss the appropriate time interval to be used when
they take their pulses, i.e.. 6, 10, 15, or 30 seconds or the full minute. Students take
their pulses for the agreed upon time interval, calculate their bpm and record the
data. The music is turned on and the students engage in a few minutes of aerobic
type exercise. Again they take their pulses, calculate their bpm, and record the data.
Each student forms an ordered pair with the data (bpm after aerobic exercise, bpm
before aerobic exercise). The ordered pair from each student is listed and the points
plotted using a dot sticker on a large poster graph. Each group is responsible for
graphing the data and applying its knowledge of scatter plots to find the line of best
fit. Equations are written for these lines and results are shared. The lesson
concludes with students discussing how the information obtained could be used to
make predictions.
