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Lesson Plan

Recognize key features of the graph of an exponential function including the rate of growth and the y-intercept by investigating the relationship between a function's expression and its graph

teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Content.HSF-IF.C.7e

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Big Ideas: In the graph of the standard exponential function, f(x) = ab^x, the ‘a’ value determines the y-intercept, and the ‘b’ value determines how steep the function is. Students examine 3 different exponential models, based on a chain e-mail. Students are asked to write function rules for the 3 models and compare them algebraically and graphically, and then decide which model would exceed 250 emails more quickly. Students discover that, given an exponential function f(x)=ab^x, the 'a' value is the y-intercept of the graph, and the 'b' value affects the steepness of the graph. Vocabulary: y-intercept, exponential function
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