I have reintroduced team roles. I use the Team Roles described by the College Preparatory Mathematics (CPM) curriculum. Today we did the second lesson of one that I consider very Pseudo-Context but I have made it fun by pretending that we are in the Twilight Zone. I play the Twilight Zone theme song and then we get going. The crazy context of this problem is that their team is working for A Function Company and the boss and CEO, Freda Function, needs help. Each team was assigned a parabola, given to them in terms of an equation. They needed to describe this parabola by defining certain points, the vertex, x and y intercepts, which direction it opens (up or down). I had them make the graph, create a table. A few students had computers and I had a few graphing calculators and they could use the technology if they could figure it out themselves (I've shown them how to use graphing calculators and graphing programs many times and many of them have said they find it too confusing, but it was interesting today that when they realized how much work it could save, they were motivated and they did figure it out on their own)
They had to answer several questions and made a poster describing their parabolas. The engagement was amazing! I get it to teach it 2 more times tomorrow.