Sunday, January 20, 2019

Barbie Bungee for Scatter Plots

Barbie Bungee is a really old lesson that has so many versions. My version has changed almost every year that I have done it. I have added and taken away things each year that I have learned from Twitter, blogs and my students. But it remains one of my favorite lessons and it is the perfect way to start the Bivariate Data Unit. It is also part of the Barbie collection of lessons since I have added Barbie Zipline. I really think Mattel should sponsor our math! Take a look back at the first years of Barbie Bungee!



When I moved to a new school, the layout of my room Barbie Bungee had to change as well. I added an amazing science teacher and a super fun hype video. I started with having students wonder about what kinds of questions they would ask as the owner of a bungee jumping business. Having math and science together enabled students to think about weight and heights along with elasticity and energy. 


Instead of using the trend line to predict a random height, like in the past, we had students predict how many rubber bands Barbie would need to bungee off the SCHOOLHOUSE! Our maintenance supervisor agreed to go on the roof and drop our Barbies. Students were given the height of the building to predict the number of rubber bands. Some were really close, others died a hard death!

It was super cool to have Barbie bungee off the roof....but....the next year, we thought, wouldn't it be more fun if the students could drop Barbie?! So we trekked out to the football field and had them drop from the top of the bleachers!

It was exciting to hear the cheers for thrilling jumps and aahhhhhs for not so thrilling jumps! We did not take into consideration the {power line} under the bleachers. A couple of Barbies probably wished we had! We had one wrap around so hard, she lost her head. The maintenance crew had to go out and retrieve those. We were more aware the next year and dropped away from the power line!

Present day, as a Curriculum Leader, I encouraged my Pre-Algebra teacher to give it a try. It felt like it was my first year doing it as I walked him through the planning. My teacher was excited, and so was I, as we set up his room for the data collection. 

The students were so into it that my teacher upped the excitement level by teasing them with the "DEATH DROP" the next day! As we set up the jump in the cafeteria, off the crosswalk, he said he wanted to "decorate" it more because the block column was plain. Say the word decorate and more and I am all heart eyes and fonts! I created zones and a poster for his drop and I think it really added a lot to the BIG DROP. 

Students were excited to see what zone their prediction would get Barbie into. It was fun listening to them as each group went. "I told you we should have said 32." "Our Barbie is already dead!" "That was her hair that hit, not her head!" The zones definitely added an element of anticipation. Because it was set up in the cafeteria, classes after lunch were eager to get their trend line equation just right. 

Some jumps were so close we posted them to our social media and asked for help deciding. This increased the hype and brought the community into our lesson. 

I am so happy I was able to help out with this one because it is definitely one of my faves! A close second to Barbie Zipline. Read all about it here and let me know what you think!

Grab the handout I used here and the interactive notebook version here.


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