Upper School students in Algebra 2 are solving real-world problems with methods they’ve learned for solving quadratic functions, including a particular favorite category: projectile motion problems.

These problems focus on dropping, kicking, throwing, or launching items and understanding their position in relation to principles of physics.

Students are able to utilize initial velocity and initial position to write equations to determine time and position of objects.

One of their favorite problems involved the (purely hypothetical!) example of two students throwing their math textbooks off the roof. Given the initial upward velocities of both items, students had to determine which of the two books hit the ground first and calculate the time difference.

“This is a great opportunity for students to make connections with other subjects,” teacher Catie McAlister said. “They really enjoyed this one!”