This Algebra 1 project was inspired by Fawn’s Visual Patterns site, and her Patterns Poster lesson.

We do one of the Visual Patterns every Tuesday for our “Tough Patterns Warm Up” activity, but I thought this would be a great culmination activity to our functions unit. Students must write both explicit and recursive formulas in this unit, so the patterns project brings both together nicely. Instead of supplying students with the patterns this time, they created their own! I encouraged students to be creative and choose an image interesting to them.

I provided them with a planning guide and scoresheet:

Students were given one class period to brainstorm ideas, start sketching, and write their equations. Once approved, they had about one week to make their posters at home. Some worked on the posters in school during homeroom, or at the end of a period if they finished their work early.

When I do this project again next year, I will more strongly stress the array of the images. For example, the apples placed in the diagonal vs. the Olaf snowmen which were placed in simply a straight line.

I love this project because it gives students a chance to be creative, and sometimes silly, but also because it directly relates to the math content we are studying.