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Understanding by Design

Title: Limits and Their Properties

Subject/Course: Advanced Placement Calculus
Topic: Limits and Their Properties
Grades: High School
Designers: Mark Pickering
Stage 1 - Desired Results
Established Goals:
Standard: From the Advanced Placement AB Calculus course outline.

 How to estimate a limit using a numerical or graphical approach 
 Diagram different ways that a limit can fail to exist
 Evaluate a limit using properties of limits
 Develop and use a strategy for finding limits
 Determine continuity at a pint and continuity on an open interval
 Determine one­sides limits and continuity on a closed interval
 Understand and use the Intermediate Value Theorem
 Determine infinite limits from the left and from the right
 Find and sketch the vertical asymptotes of the graph of a function
 Determine finite limits at infinity, determine the horizontal asymptotes, if any, of the graph of a 
 Determine infinite limits at infinity.

Understandings: Essential Questions:

Students will understand that... -
 Functions can be represented in a variety  How do you use math to describe 
of ways: graphical, numerical, analytical
or verbal. They should understand the how things change?
connections among these  Is the physical universe susceptible 
representations. to human 
 Technology can be utilized to help solve
problems, experiment, interpret results understanding/mathematical 
and support conclusions. description? Is it mechanical?
 Critical thinking will be utilized to  Does an increasing bounded 
determine the reasonableness of
solutions, including sign, size, relative sequence always have a limit?
accuracy and units of measurement.
 Calculus is a coherent body of knowledge
with limits and continuity at the
foundation of this appreciable human

Students will know how to... Students will be able to....

 An intuitive understanding of the

limiting process.
 Sketch the graph of a function  Calculating limits using algebra.
 Estimating limits from graphs or tables
 Find the intercepts of a graph
of data.
 Test a graph for symmetry with   Understanding asymptotes in terms of
respect to an axis and the origin graphical behavior.
 Find the points of intersection of two   Describing asymptotic behavior in
terms of limits involving infinity.
graphs  An intuitive understanding of continuity.
 Interpret mathematical models for  (The function values can be made as
real­life data close as desired by taking sufficiently
close values of the domain.)
 Find the slope of a line passing   Understanding continuity in terms of
through two points limits.
 Write the equation of a line with a   Geometric understanding of graphs of
continuous functions (Intermediate
given point and slope Value Theorem).
 Interpret slope as a ratio or as a rate in
a real­life application
 Sketch the graph of a linear equation 
in slope­intercept form
 Write equations of lines that are 
parallel or perpendicular to a given 
 Use function notation to represent and
evaluate a function
 Find the domain and range of a 
 Identify different types of 
transformations of functions
 Classify functions and recognize 
combinations of functions

Stage 2 – Assessment Evidence

Performance Task: Other Evidence
o Planning calculator exercises for different concepts.  Quizzes on limits and continuity.
o Conduct a survey of what students implement in
order to solve limit problems.  Calculator exercises for limits and
o Plan a lesson for different levels of students with the continuity concepts.
different representations of symbolic, numerical,
 Calculus java applets to explore concepts
graphical, and verbal.
with a study buddy.
 Online assessments from various websites
that diagnose strengths and weaknesses.
Stage 3 – Learning Plan
Learning Activitity: This activity is cumulative as each topic pertaining to limits and their
properties involves many explorations with java applets for calculus and graphing calculator
in and out of class. Thus, this activity requires the output of a review game utilizing
technology that teacher will integrate into the classroom on a daily basis.
1. G What is the goal of the task? What is it designed to assess? As a game designer with an
educational company, your task is to design a review game utilizing multimedia technology such as
Voicethread, powerpoint, or GoAnimate that will most effectively review limits and continuity.
2. R What real-world role will the student assume as he/she is performing the task? A game designer
with an educational company.
3. A Who is the audience for the task? Your target audience is the testing department for this
educational company.
4. S What is the situation that provides the context for the task? You have a two-part challenge: (1) to
develop an educational review game that integrates review of limits and continuity, and (2) to
clearly communicate the process for solving each facet of their review game utilizing multimedia
technology such as Voicethread, powerpoint, or GoAnimate.
5. P What is the product or performance that is required by the task? You need to develop a written
process outlining the steps in sequence for each review problem similar to an answer key.
Additionally, you need to include a graphic format to accompany the written description.
6. S By what standards will the product or performance be judged? The review game needs to follow
the criteria for good design accurately and creatively; identify the key concepts of limits and
continuity; include a clear and written description of the process; and provide a review game
deliverable in a multimedia format such as Voicethread, powerpoint, or GoAnimate.