Teaching functions

I think my group of third graders would like a more current song. Recently, we finished up a unit on Ancient Mali. In order to help the kids learn the curriculum, I found a song on YouTube that had changed the lyrics to “Up Town Funk” to words describing Ancient Mali. I would utilize that song in the function “songwriting” lesson.

I tred to use certain scenarios in discussing functions. Just like referring to a certain job. For instance a driver of a vehicle. When you want to drive you jus call the driver

I teach Kindergarten so songwriting or lyrics is not something they have seen explicitly. I think to introduce functions I would tie it into math. In kindergarten we talk about how to represent a number in many forms; i.e 5 objects or circles can be represented by the number 5…each written numeral has a pre-agreed function.

In an advanced class I would give it a try with tinkercad to introduce functions. I just discovered that you can do block coding with tinkercad. An example of tinkercad could be analysed. As a next step the students would design something small and simple themselves. For that project they would need to pre-think the problem, break it down in smaller problems which they might want to create a function for.

I love the example of “Old MacDonald” in the video. I teach Kindergarten so this is a perfect way to explain!