Function Faces

In my 10th grade mathematics class, students began studying functions in April.  We looked at four main functions – quadratic, cubic, absolute value and square root.  I placed the emphasis on understanding the transformation of functions – translations, stretches and reflections.  As a mid unit assignment, I asked students to create a face using Desmos.  Their instructions were fairly simple – they had to use the four functions we had discussed and they had to use a variety of individual and combined transformations. (See the instruction document below.)  The results were fantastic, both for this assignment as well as their end-of-unit test results (specifically for the transformations questions, less so for those with function notation or composites of functions).  Here are a few of the images students produced:







Wes’s Cat

Wes's Face



There were a surprising number of cats actually.  I blame YouTube.  Actually, I liked the cats.

Some of the faces had hair, some had defined face outlines.  In the end though, they were all different – something that rarely happens.  Almost no one followed the instructions for the scaling of their axes – something I will emphasize next time.  Also, I want to work on developing a rubric for this – one that assesses the content, their reflection as well as creativity.  I’d love to hear feedback about this assignment!


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