Data and Probability

It’s Girl Scout cookie time

Have you ever wondered how the income from Girl Scout cookie sales is distributed to the individual girls, to their Troops, or to the organization? In this activity students learn a little about the organization of the Girl Scouts, try to…

How much snow is that?

Start out this activity with: What do you notice? What do you wonder? How many inches of snow produced that pile?  How much snow in volume is on top of the car?  How much could that snow weigh? Students try to approximate…

Windchill

When the weather person talks about wind chill did you ever wonder how they calculate that number?  In this activity students use the National Weather System chart to gauge wind chill, examine the patterns that correlate increasing wind and/or decreasing…

Data on the National Mall sites

Activity #1 – Look at the individuals who are memorialized on the National Mall and using fractions or percents decide what you can notice about those we honor.  If you would like to show images of the monuments and memorials to…

How Many Pennies did Otha Save?

Otha Anders used picking up pennies as a way to remember to pray.  In this 3-act activity we try to estimate how much he actually collected and stored in 5 gallon water jugs.  Kick off the activity with the article with…

Hexadecimal colors or paint by number

Probably most of us have heard of and even used hexadecimal color codes. Don’t you wonder why their number descriptions really make sense? In this activity we first ask students to color in our Golden Spiral by giving them the…

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…

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…

Glowing rectangles

People spend lots of time staring at their screens (glowing rectangles).  Kids spend hours each day using their cell phones, computers, tablets, television and more.  Use that interest to motivate your student’s analysis of screen ratios and what proportions they…

Free Pizza for a Whole Stadium?

Act One: Clemson Football Head Coach, Dabo Swinney, offered an amazing “poll party” with pizza for everyone if Clemson makes the College Football Playoffs in the last poll of the season.  See the written news story here.  See the news video clip…