Category: Algebra

These posts help students see patterns and relationships.

How many lights do I need for my tree?

Check out our Christmas Tree.  You need to buy lights for the tree.  Without calculating, guess how many feet of lights you will need.What information do you need to better estimate the number of feet of lights that you need?…

Wrapping presents on the diagonal

 Dr. Sara Santos is a popular mathematician and speaker on mathematics.  She has worked out a method for wrapping boxes (rectangular prisms) as efficiently as possible. (Watch the video above)  Her method was written up in this article in Mental…

Shipping Crunch

Now that the shopping season has begun, it’s time to get the packages to your homes.  Two big companies take care of a lot of that shipping.  How do they manage that? The mechanisms for these two shipping giants are…

Thanksgiving, football, Black Friday, and giving

4th down – should you punt kick or go for a field goal? This is two activities. One is on graph reading. This is perhaps suitable for younger students. The other activity is on data analysis and the creation of the chart shown…

Black Friday

When shopping next Friday, students will be able to add some understanding and analysis to the trip after calculating savings in dollars and percents with this timely investigation.

How should I cook my turkey?

Should I oven bake it, deep fry it or barbecue and smoke it?  When do I have to wake up to begin preparations? How long will the cooking take?  How much will it cost?  How many can I feed?  Will there…

Macy’s 2017 parade

As we get ready for next week’s holiday, students can study a map of the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, describe, measure and hypothesize why this route was chosen and then calculate how long each band will be marching and…

Canstruction

Act One:  Take a look at the pic. What questions come to mind? Just before Thanksgiving there is an annual demonstration at the Winter Palace in the World Financial Center of New York City.   Canstruction is a celebration of…

Is my son going to win … again?

My son’s pretty young but is he still going to whoop me?  We were playing Monopoly Junior.  Can you decide who will win?  In this activity use addition and/or multiplication in authentic problem solving to determine who should win in…

Operation Gratitude – Halloween candy buy back

This is a great idea! Motivate kids to get rid of all of that candy for a good cause. Operation Gratitude and dentists are encouraging healthy eating, motivated giving, and offering a good use for all of that leftover candy.

Ghost costume pattern

I’m going to make a costume pattern to sell.  People can buy my plan and make awesome, long, full, scary, ghost costumes.  This scheme will be so simple.  Perhaps I’ll get rich! In this activity young students can reason about…

Scary costumes

Every year Americans spend lots of money on Halloween and Halloween costumes. Use our updated data on Halloween spending in America to engage your students in an analysis of the ratios and percents of population, participation, and money spent in honor…

Population Clock

Click here to see the Population Clock bigger in a new window. How in the world does this clock conclude that there is a net gain in the United States of one person every 14 seconds?

Vampire bats

Ooooo. Scary!  This is a slightly didactic activity on vampire bats.  We’ve given lots of interesting metric and customary unit facts and asked students to relate those sizes to more familiar objects.  Simply enjoy the season with this slightly creepy activity…

Ghost Whisperer

This Friday is the 13th.  Let the spooky stuff begin! Students can play this game online at Ghost Whisperer Crystal Ball and Figure out why it works. Construct viable arguments Critique the work of others This activity can be used with any…