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Music and Math: Combining Forms and Formulas

Math with its abstract formulas and unique vocabulary, seems obscure at best and most often irrelevant to students. By contrast, music is all around us and is used by all people young and old. Students are listening to music, downloading music, sharing music and watching music in many formats and on multiple platforms. Music is exciting, relevant and a medium that brings joy to young and old. Finding ways to make math relevant and engage students in ways that will increase math achievement is an educational goal both in the classroom and in the larger educational community. Using music with its natural relationship to math and its applications will provide an engaging, fun way to learn and remember math while applying music concepts. This unit explains music form and compares it to mathematical formulas to create lessons combining music and math. The lessons are designed for high school mathematics students enrolled in Algebra 1 or Algebra 2 exploring Parent Functions and Families of Functions.
It can be utilized by teachers of either regular or honors classes studying the family of functions.

Vicki Baker
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