International Populations

Applying Algebra - Exponential Relationships

Cultural Relevance

Students pair up into partners. Each pair picks one of the most populous counties in the world (can exclude the United States if desired) and finds the national population in at least 8 years spanning at least 500 years and must plot and graph the exponential growth (or decay) of that country. Each pair will then make a poster for their country, complete with a graph of the plotted points, a modeled equation for the country's population, and three cultural facts about the country. Students will then hang up their posters around the room and walk around, looking at each pair's poster.


As well as directly involving the cultures of other countries for students to learn about, this lesson also demonstrates cultural responsiveness by encouraging social interaction. By relying on their classmates, students will gain a sense of their methods of communication and will show increased levels of attention and engagement.

Student Spotlight

Jacob is an ELL student who just moved here from Honduras. He is having trouble making friends due to the social and language barriers. This lesson would help him, as he would be paired with an English speaking student, and would learn from both social interaction and English interactions. Jacob and his partner could be assigned to the United States to help Jacob gain a cultural perspective of his new home.

How would your students gain and appreciate perspectives from different cultures and/or viewpoints?

Students gain a variety of cultural perspectives by first learning about the culture of their assigned countries and then by learning cultural facts about each pair's country. This will also allow students to compare and contrast different countries' cultures easily.

How would you position learning opportunities so that students could interact/communicate with others with different cultures/perspectives?

I would prepare the pairs that students are in so that each student is working with someone that they normally wouldn't work with, this offering different perspectives and personalities than most students are used to seeing.