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In the fall of 2024, Citizen Math released updated versions of every lesson in our library, plus a few new ones! We know you may have already prepped an earlier version or planned a repeat of last year, so we're continuing to make these earlier versions available through Thursday December 5, 2024.

You can find the new lessons through the regular search, and we hope you love them as much as we do. You can read more about these updates in Our Community.

In 2004, Facebook launched to little fanfare. Today, approximately 25% of the world’s population uses it every month, and Facebook describes its mission as to create a ""global community for bringing people together.""

In this lesson, students write a quadratic function to model the number of possible connections between users on a social network. They use information about how Facebook has grown over time to determine how the number of connections has changed, and discuss whether this technology is expanding our perspectives or reinforcing those we already have.

- As a social network grows, the number of possible connections among users grows by more and more.
- Social media services such as Facebook, Instagram, and others have billions of users. This suggests that there should be a mind-boggling number of possible connections between users. Because users only interact with a small subset of total users, and because algorithms narrow the people and information that users are exposed to, the actual number of connections is far less.
- It’s unclear whether networking technologies such as social media serve to connect us or divide us.

- Given a pattern, create a rule to determine the next value in the sequence
- Write and graph a quadratic function to model a real-world scenario; interpret the meaning of a non-linear rate of change
- Evaluate a quadratic function for different values of x