Classroom Activity

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Key Topic: Trigonometric Functions, Graphs of Trigonometric Functions

Exploring space is a complex endeavor. Future destinations include Mars. Students will investigate, analyze and model the communication time lag between Earth and Mars. Transmitting a message between Earth and Mars could take up to 20 minutes because of the distance between the two planets.

Students will
  • Use trigonometric functions to model periodic behavior or real life data;
  • Make predictions based on the properties of a function;
  • Graph a sine curve; and
  • determine the domain and range of functions using graphs and tables.

Prerequisites: Students should have prior knowledge of plotting data on a coordinate plane, of solving equations, and of key characteristics of a sinusoidal function and the parent function, f(x)=sinx.

› Earth Can You Hear Me Now Educator Edition (PDF 277 KB)
› Earth Can You Hear Me Now Student Edition (PDF 225 KB)

Related Resources
› VIDEO: Spirit: Six Years of Roving Mars
› VIDEO: Mars and Earth Orbit Animation