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A Dysfunctional Pokéball

| Learning | January 8, 2015

(We are in a calculus class, discussing polar curves.)

Teacher: “What does the graph of [function] look like?”

Student #1: “It’s a circle.”

(The teacher draws the circle on the board, putting a dot at its center. The circle had the horizontal axis going through its center, so it now resembles the “Poké Ball” from Pokémon.)

Student #1: “Looks like a Pokémon ball.”

Teacher: “It does look like a Pokémon ball.”

Student #2: “No, it doesn’t look like that. It looks like this.”

(Student #2 explains her (correct) graph of the function.)

Teacher: “Right, thanks for correcting me there.”

(He draws it on the board. The graph strongly resembles a sideways butt.)

Student #1: “It looks like a butt.”

Teacher: “Right, it’s a butt, not a Pokémon ball.”

(Cue laughter.)

Teacher: “I never thought I would say that sentence.”

(We proceed to do a problem based on the graph, the entire time using the terms ‘butt’ and ‘Pokémon ball.’)

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