Thursday, January 22, 2015

Function SET Game

My junior class study hall (made up of kids who are not math students of mine), are a bit of an active bunch.  In order to get them to concentrate on actually getting homework done, I have bribed them with games on Fridays.

Last Friday, I brought out SET.  None of them had played this game before, and I have only played a few times (I know, I know: and I call myself a Math teacherA??).  Anyway, several of them really got into it once I played a few rounds with them, and because they were getting excited and arguing over whether something was a set or not, others began to come and look over their shoulders.

(Did you know you can play this on line?????)

So all of THIS got me thinking about transformations of functions, families of functions and the like, so I made this

My co-teacher and I are going to try it out tomorrow as a warm up with a Pre Cal class that has really mixed ability levels.  We'll put them in groups of 3 or 4: make them each responsible for justifying what makes a set.  We won't give them any rules, just:  "Make a set, but be able to explain why these 3 can make a set."  

I did make a SmartNotebook with the same table in it AND some sample pix of what makes a set in the actual SET game.  If they are really stuck, we will show those to see if we can't make some progress!

Would love feedback if you try this:  what went well, what suggestions for change?
Keeping my fingers crossed that this doesn't bomb!


  1. I think I was sitting with you during TMC14 on the first day when we played Set. It was my first time too, believe it or not. What an awesome idea to merge Set with families of functions! Love this. Thanks for sharing your resources as well, as I'm definitely going to use this. How did the activity go with your kids?

  2. Hi! Yes! I think you are right! It went ok. NONE of the kids had ever played SET before, so we had to show them the slides. Since we were doing this as warm up type of activity, we limited them to 15-20 mins. and then went through them, giving each group a turn to go to the board, write 3 functions they said were a set and justify their reasoning. We should have done this right off: had each group put together what they thought was a set, and then share, letting them know why it was or was not a set.

    I am also going to add to the possible functions to make some more easy sets ("they all move 3 to the left, all different functions"), just to get them going. Maybe throw in a few trig functions? We shall see how much time I have this week!