14 Ways to Use The Lost Function


We talked to teachers and college professors who are using Pi & The Lost Function (TLF) in the classroom. Here is a list of 14 different ways they are using Pi with their students.

H = High School use M = Middle School use E = Elementary School use
C = College use PD = Professional Development
  1. Flipped Classroom (M/H/C)
    • Students use the online learning content at home. The next day in class, students complete the mysterious math problems in TLF to assess their understanding of the content.
  2. Smartboard Whole Group (M/H)
    • Open TLF on your classroom Smartboard. Have students work together as a whole group to answer challenge questions. As you receive mysterious math problems, each student can answer the question at their desk. Allow a different student to move Pi around the virtual 3-D world for each challenge!
    • Open TLF on your classroom Smartboard. Have small groups work collaboratively on the problems and show their group answer on small dry erase boards. After all groups have displayed their answer, assign each group a point for a correct answer. Determine a prize for the group with the most points!
  3. Flexible Group Play (M/H)
    • Use the Reporting tool in the Teacher Portal to see student progress. From here, you can assign students to flexible groups and target the skills they need. As you rotate through groups, have students play specific challenges again to see progress.
  4. Individual Play or Homeschool Use (E/M/H/C)
    • Rent the computer lab or use classroom laptops to allow each student to progress through the game at their pace or assign a specific challenge based on your curriculum. Check out our alignment tool to cater game play to your curriculum!
  5. Math Journals/Writing Logs (M/H)
    • As students play through TLF, have them keep track of problems they found difficult, new skills they’ve learned, and new vocabulary terms they’ve been exposed to. While students are playing, the teacher can meet with small groups and discuss any difficult problems they encountered.
  6. Mobile Learning (E/M/H/C)
    • Using individual licenses, students can learn with TLF anytime, anywhere!
  7. Gifted Programs (E)
    • Challenge students in gifted programs or advanced math classes by allowing them to start TLF from Level 1.1. Allow the students to progress at their own pace through the curriculum, exploring new topics as they go.
  8. Incentives in Alternative Settings (M/H)
    • Many teachers who work in an alternative setting choose to use TLF as a reward for good behavior. On Free Friday, students can play TLF after a week of good behavior.
  9. End-of-Year Test Review (M/H/C)
    • Before taking standardized tests or end-of-course tests, students can review math skills through TLF. After viewing student reports on the Teacher Portal, the teacher can tailor instruction to meet the students’ needs during a review session.
  10. Math Centers/Stations (M)
    • Break the class into groups of 3-5 students each. Rotate the groups through independent work, TLF computer station, a hands-on activity, yesterday’s review, and a small flexible group with teacher. Assign the TLF computer station with a particular challenge based on lessons you want to review or introduce students to.
  11. Whole Group Learning Content (M/H/C)
    • Display the online learning content via projector with students. After teaching a math mini lesson on a particular topic, perform a guided practice problem with the class or watch an instructional video that goes along with the classroom learning objective.
  12. College Placement Test Prep (H/C)
    • Students complete TLF to refresh the math skills they learned in middle/high school. This helps them maximize their placement test score to prevent them from placing into non-credit developmental math courses.
    • If your students are in a remedial math course, use TLF or the online learning content as an engaging way to review math skills with them. You can rest knowing that your students are getting helpful hints based on their need in the practice problems.
    • Pre-service teachers use TLF to prepare for the math portion of their teacher certification exams.
  13. Professional Development Workshops (PD)
    • Principals are running PD workshops to expose elementary math teachers to the middle school content that their students will be required to master in the middle school years. This helps elementary teachers see the connections that need to be made to prepare students for middle school math.
  14. Certification/Licensure (PD)
    • Many states are requiring teachers to pass subject-matter tests in order to be considered “Highly Qualified.” Reviewing the math concepts in TLF helps teachers meet licensure requirements.



If you have a new and exciting way that you use TLF in the classroom or with a group of students, email us and explain how you use TLF. Your idea could be featured on our website!