Each Community Spotlight features an outstanding group, partner, resource, or member of our community.

Neighborhood Fences and Gates  

By Ricardo Cortez, Cynthia Anhalt, Susan Staats, and Marta Civil

fence image


Module Description:

Using knowledge of functions and the properties of their graphs, students have an opportunity to propose functions, including an appropriate domain, that meet conditions that are inferred from the photographs of fences and gates in their neighborhood. This is a competency that is necessary in mathematical modeling when we select functions to fit data, for example. The activity has a cultural aspect by promoting a discussion of the purpose for having gates or fences in our homes.


Teaching Setting:

This classroom modeling project is suitable for high school or undergraduate students who have taken Algebra as a prerequisite.


Full Citation:

Cortez, R., Anhalt, C., Staats, S., Civil, M. (2018). Neighborhood Fences and Gates. Math Modeling Hub, QUBES Educational Resources. doi:10.25334/Q4699Q


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Related Materials and Opportunities

This resource was created by members of the Math Modeling Hub (MMHub).  MMHub is an online community and resource repository for the teaching and learning of mathematical modeling at all grade levels. It is being collaboratively organized by COMAP, NCTM, and SIAM - three substantial mathematics professional societies with interests in modeling education. MMHub recently launched its beta testing phase and is actively seeking users and feedback around their modeling teaching materials.  Browse other MMHub resources, which are designed for pre-K through graduate students, or visit their Getting Started page to learn how you can get involved.

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Community Spotlight: Issue 2