The Blue Marble

This Tuesday is Earth Day. Use this activity to demonstrate the various mappings of our 3-d Earth to a 2-d piece of paper. Students compare maps with this famous photo and check to see which characteristics are maintained and which are distorted.


Clicking on this image will show a larger, expandable image in a new window.

In honor of Earth Day we encourage you to show your classes the beauty of the Earth and remind everyone of one of the first times that it was seen in its entirety from space, December 7, 1972 from an Apollo mission.  



How many Peeps are sold at Easter time each year?

Treat your students to some authentic and delicious math as they estimate, consider reasonability, determine necessary info, problem solve and conduct random samplings.  The activity, hints and data are below.

CCSS: 7.SP.1, 7.SP.2, MP1, MP2, MP3

Peeps.pdf         Peeps-hints-and-solutions.pdf

Boston Marathon

Jerry@BostonMarathonThat’s Jerry, my nephew, waving.

Monday, April 21, Patriot’s Day, is the next running of the Boston Marathon.

  • What do you know about marathons?
  • What do you know about the Boston Marathon?
  • How long do you think the marathon is? Make your best guess.
  • How many people run it? Make your best guess.
  • Make an educated guess as to the fastest marathon time.  

We’ve gathered a lot of great data and asked some sensible and some surprising rate questions.  Enjoy the conversation of page 1 of the activity as a class task and then set your students to work calculating the rest.


It’s Girl Scout cookie time

GScookiesIt happens to me every year.  My pantry is bursting at the seems … with Girl Scout cookies.  These kids are masters at the art of sales.  I run into the cookie selling teams of Girl Scouts everywhere, and unfortunately I always end up buying several boxes.  Now I have a kitchen full of Thin Mints, Peanut Butter Patties, Lemonades and more.  It got me wondering … how many boxes of Girl Scout cookies are sold each year?  What does that add up to in yearly sales?

Mom’s matzo ball soup


Passover begins this year on Monday evening, April 14th, with a Passover seder dinner. Passover is one of the three high holidays in the Jewish calendar and celebrates the Exodus of Jews from slavery in Egypt.

Let your students review fractions in this investigation on tripling my mom’s recipe and trying to use the recipe to create one humungus matzo ball.

Recent Earthquakes

IRIS.eduSeismicMonitorNorthern Chili and Los Angeles, California have experienced recent earthquakes.  These quakes are along the “Ring of Fire” where Earth underground plates often collide.

The IRIS (Incorporated Research Institute of Seismology) Seismic Monitor will allow your class to visualize the most recent quakes and their magnitudes in this region.

Our updated Richter scale activity will allow your students to get an appreciation of the logarithmic Richter magnitudes.