Exponential Growth and Decay
Exponential growth represent an increase in something exponentially, such as doubling or tripling a number. 2, 4, 8, 16, 32... is an example of exponential growth. Exponential decay works the other way, like 81, 27, 9, 3... is cut by one third each time. It is important that students become familiar with these types of functions, just like any other type of function they already have in their repertiore. Students will first be shown an example of exponential growth using M&Ms, and they will be able to see it with their own eyes. Once the students have the hands on experience, formulas and problems can be presented to them that they will learn to solve.
All of these ideas will be related to the Medieval time period and the Black Plague and how it affected the population of Europe and the world. Students will gain insight into how devastating such a disease was then and how bad it might be if it happened today.