Students generally first encounter piecewise–defined functions in the form of a step function (perhaps the postage stamp function) in an algebra class. Piecewise–defined functions do not play a central role in mathematics before calculus although they can serve as challenging examples in the precalculus curriculum. Before the advent of the TI–Nspire, entering piecewise–defined functions on the calculator was time consuming and not particularly user friendly. That has changed.

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### G. Patrick Vennebush and Diana Mata

Students analyze items from the media to answer mathematical questions related to the article. This month's clips discuss misrepresented formulas.

### Mara G. Landers

A measurement-based activity can help students struggling to understand trigonometric functions.

Hearts are the theme of a collection of problems and solutions.

### Lisa Berger

An analysis of problems from state assessments and other sources helps preservice teachers discover analogous mathematical representations.

### Jeremy F. Strayer, James B. Hart and Sarah K. Bleiler-Baxter

A four-phase process and three principles for building a mathematics learning community use rich discussion of student work.

A set of problems of many types.

Ellipses are the focus of photographs and mathematical equations.

A set of problems of many types.

### Scott Steketee and Daniel Scher

Students see that geometric transformations—dilation and translation—correspond to algebraic parameters—m and b—in the familiar equation for a linear function.