Greatest March Madness program

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Based on this data, which do you think is the greatest March Madness program ever?

Once students decide their “best program ever” challenge them use a different criteria than they originally used. That is, ask them to think of another way to determine the best program ever.  There are lots of ways to think about it.  No one way is the only way or the correct way.  The point is to get students reasoning and communicating mathematically. 

Alarming ice cracks on Brunt Ice Sheet in Antarctica

A new, fast-growing ice crack is forcing the Halley VI British research station in Antarctica (shown above) to be moved.  Fear of a huge break-off from the ice sheet is alarming not just to the scientists on the station but to all of us.  At what rate is this crack growing and how large will this iceberg be when it breaks off?  Click below for the activity:

The activity: HalleyVI-ice-base.pdf

CCSS: 6.G.A, 7.G.A, 7.G.B, HSG/GPE.B.7, HSA/CED.A.2, HSG/SRT.A.1, HSN/Q.A.1

March Madness – Does seeding really matter?

March Madness is the big 68 team college basketball tournament that takes over our TV viewing during the weekends of March. School and office friends are filling out brackets.  Engage your students in  percents as they get excited about March Madness. Is getting a higher seed really an advantage?  Use 30 years of data to help determine for which seeds it makes sense to pick an upset.  Finally, students determine a general strategy for picking games in the first round.

Saint Patrick’s Day, March 17th

green-riverGreen, green river - They're doing it again. In Chicago, the local plumbers union "dye" the Chicago River emerald green.  Students learn what PPM (parts per million) means and  attempt to figure out how much dye is used to sufficiently color the river.

CCSS: 5.MD, 6.RP, 6.G, 7.RP, 7.G

ShamrockShake2016McDonald's seasonally serves its Shamrock Shake for Saint Patrick's Day. Add a little nutrition math to your celebration.  In this post we look at calories, carbohydrates, sugars, fats, and proteins to decide what would be left for our day's meal allotment after we had lunch and a Shamrock Shake at McDonald's.

CCSS: 6.SP, 6.RP, 7.SP

The perfect bracket

March Madness Men's and Women's Brackets


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

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

Sunday night, March 12th, is Selection Sunday for the Men's March Madness Tournament.  Monday night, March 13th is the selection night for the Women's March Madness Tournament.  The March Madness bracket predictions can begin.

What are your chances of picking every game? How does the change from 64 to 65 to now, 68 teams in the field complicate things?  How many brackets would you need to fill out to pick every possibility?  How many reams of paper would you need to print all of those brackets?  Let’s do the math!   Also, check out the video below that explores your odds of picking all games in the tournament perfectly.

Pi Day is coming!

Pi Second = March 14 @ 1:59:26

Celebrate π in your school and in your math class with activities that demonstrate how π was derived; visually show why π makes sense; show a surprising place where π is used; increase students ability to measure and long divide; applauds the talent of people who can memorize large strings of numbers; and lets students just have fun.

PiDay-ClassOpener - Puzzle to ponder with a surprising outcome.

 For members: PiDayClassOpener-solution.pdf