When teachers start a lesson for new material, they need to create a "hook lesson" for students to become interested in the new material. The following activity is a GREAT game to start an introduction to the topic of exponents.
Create your Hero:
Step one: Choose your abilities
Super Speed Super Strength Invulnerability Telepathy Telekinesis
Lightning Fire Ice Earthquake (Creature) power
High teach Gadgets Blaster Magic Power ring/gem Stretchy
Greater Ability 1: (base: 4) Lesser Ability 2: (base: 3) Random Ability 3: (base: die roll)
In the battle, you choose which ability you're using each round before you roll the dice. For Greater and Lesser Ability, you will use one die and whatever the outcome of the roll that number will become the exponent. For Random Ability, you will roll two dice and choose which is number is the base and which number is the exponent.
Step Two: Origin Story
How did you get your powers?
Step Three: Are you a Hero or Villain
Step Four: Picture of your character.
Each battle you will use each power once. *Note: it is ok for heroes to fight heroes and villains to fight villains.
Battle last for three rounds. Roll the dice to see who goes first.
ROUND 1: first player chooses an ability. Second player chooses an ability. Roll the dice at the same time to discover the exponent for the base of the ability. Highest exponent total wins round one.
ROUND 2: Switch! Second player and first player chooses an ability they haven't used in round 1. Roll the dice at the same time to discover the exponent for the base of the ability. Highest exponent total wins round two.
ROUND 3: Both players will use the remaining ability. Roll the dice at the same time to discover the exponent for the base of the ability. Highest exponent total wins round three.
TIEBREAKER: The players will use their random ability one more time.
- Team Play: a team of super heroes fight another team of villains or heroes. Teammates multiply their scores each round.
- Character design: players assign their power base. The student choose the base (1 or higher) for each power so that the three abilities add up to 12.
This game can be used in a lesson plan to teach exponents and to make the connection that we sometimes refer to the exponents as a power. This will also get the imagination of the students and get them really into the math lesson that will follow. The teacher could also have the student describe the battles in a paper and explain how they either won or lost the battle. They would have to explain what the exponents mean and the total of at least six different exponents. They would also have to explain for their random ability, why they choose the base number and the exponent number. This is a great connection to refer back to through the chapter about exponents.
As the students learn more about the exponent rules, the teacher could bring back this game and create new rules about using the exponent rules.