Author: Leslie

Soda Menorah

Happy Holidays! This Soda Menorah was on display in a Florida Target store.  It is made up entirely of 12-packs of Coca-Cola products. What questions do you have? Start out the activity by giving kids 30 seconds to look at…

Why does the date of Hanukkah keep changing?

Just updated for 2016! Saturday evening, December 24th, is the first night of Hanukkah this year. I think it was much earlier in December last year. Why isn’t it always on the same date? Students look at the Hebrew calendar…

Not enough mashed potatoes

Using his famous mashed potato recipe, Brian has asked students to change decimals to fractions, to calculate ingredient measures for various-sized Thanksgiving gatherings, to explain their thinking in calculating these figures and to judge how many servings could be created…

Nashville presentation

We had a great time presenting at the NCTM conference in Nashville this morning.  Here is a pdf of our powerpoint presentation.  Fun! RichTasksPresentation-Nashville,TN.pdf

Rescue of the Chilean miners – The 33

On August 5, 2010, the San Jose copper-gold mine near Copiapó,Chile collapsed stranding 33 miners in a large cavern more than 2,000 feet below ground. A new movie has just been released about the incident, The 33. All of the…

How much have doughnuts changed?

Part of the Smithsonian’s Sally L. Steinberg Collection of Doughnut Ephemera — Click on the image to see it larger. When you are working on volume in your class, you can use this activity for students who might like to find…

Fall hiking and the Appalachian Trail

The Appalachian Trail is one long hiking trail that begins in Georgia and ends on Mount Katadin, Maine. Fall is a beautiful time to be outdoors or on the Trail.  This activity is about calculating the needs and rates involved…

Weather extremes

This year has brought torrential rains to Texas after years of severe draught. February was the coldest month ever in much of the midwest and Northeast US.  Pakistan and India have experienced extreme and deadly heat waves. Use the open number line and…

New Horizons spacecraft observes Pluto

The New Horizon space probe was launched from Cape Canaveral on January 19, 2006. It has now come close to Pluto and has sent its first close-up images back to Earth.              

The spread of Lyme disease

Deer tick

With the start of summer and wonderful outdoor activities, it might be good to examine the growth of Lyme disease occurrences in the United States.  The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)  has a wonderful map that you can…

What’s with the plovers?

Cute little birds.  Piping plovers are presently nesting on beaches along the Atlantic coast. Consequently beaches are often roped-off or closed to protect their nests and chicks.  Is this conservation working?  What should the numbers be like after so many…

Odds of winning the Triple Crown

American Pharaoh won the Triple Crown !!! How do you calculate compound probability?  Skip the betting odds and deal only with the odds that one horse could win 3 amazing races.  June 6th is the Belmont Stakes race … the…

Big Burger

In honor of International Hamburger Day (May 28, 2015), it’s time to treat your students to ratios, proportions, fractions and BIG BURGERS! In this activity students explore the ratio of the various ingredients in the world’s largest burger (pictured above &…

Which is better … original movies or their sequels?

We’ve gathered some data on movie ratings and their sequels and asked students to analyze the data, decide on some graphing analysis and debate (with their mathematical data) which are better … the original movies or their sequels. Students see…