Visualizing Math with Desmos

With the online mathematical graphing app Desmos, JCHS students don’t just learn math, they discover patterns and ideas in a way that is visual, easy to use and fast.
In Algebra B-C and Algebra II classes, instead of using the old TI graphing calculators, students can check their work and explore the world of mathematics with the innovative app Desmos.

While many students will use it to check an answer or look at the form of an equation, the flexibility built into Desmos also allows for creative graphical visualization of concepts that they may not have even formally studied yet. Teachers can use it to quickly illustrate and tell the story of functions -- linear, exponential, quadratic, polynomial--in the classroom and also plug in data from real world problems and demonstrate how they might play out graphically. Individuals can also create and easily share their work, allowing collaboration on complex problems in a user-friendly environment.
When I looked at the work they had done, I said, "I think they just rediscovered Calculus!"
--Max Friedmann, Math Teacher

Desmos Challenge Problem

Students were assigned to explore the questions, "Under what circumstances will a line intersect the parabola y=x^2? Can you find a general formula for all such lines?" Two students took this notion further and asked, "How could we solve this problem for any parabola -- not just y = x^2 ?"

Mathematical Whimsy

Students have also used Desmos in Pre-Calculus class while studying transformations of graphs (moving, stretching, flipping). Using their understanding of functions, they created simple illustrations. 
The Jewish Community High School of the Bay (JCHS) is a unique college preparatory high school committed to integrating deep learning, universal wisdom, and Jewish values. We empower each student to embrace her or his Jewish identity, generate empathy and compassion, delight in lifelong education, and improve the world.
Jewish Community High School of the Bay
1835 Ellis Street, San Francisco, CA 94115
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Phone: 415.345.9777

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