Category: Math and Art

Point of view

If you have a set of cubes for your classroom, this would make a great group hands-on project. Its an old puzzle but the activity deserves a revisit. Below are two straight-on images of my stack of blocks. Can you…

Betsy Ross’s Star

Flag of the United States from 1777 to 1795. In honor of Independence Day we thought it would be fun to look at one story about the first American Flag. The rough design of the flag was drawn by a…

This must be a huge beach towel!

Act One: Check out this beach towel!  What do you wonder? What would you like to know? Miami artist, Misael Soto (pictured on the left below), created this giant art project to make a statement about people sharing territory at the beach.…

Spiraling squares – compass and straight edge

Can you see the many spirals in this design? Students calculate the size of each increasing round of squares and consider what sort of spirals these must be. The activity: SpiralingSquares.pdf Working with a little mathematical art is a great…

Bring Mothers’ Day math to your class!

Mother’s Day by the numbers – Mother’s Day is right around the corner and this means big business for the greeting card and floral industries. Let your students practice averages, percents, and large numbers while they analyze the statistics on Mother’s…

Pythagorean Triples and coloring

Pythagorean triples are not only handy for students to recognize but produce some interesting and lovely patterns.  We’ve combined a little coloring with our Pythagorean Triple pattern investigation to let your students relax while they color, view the beauty, and…

Valentine’s Day (11 possibilities)

Parametric graphing, heart area, chocolate volume, making a heart-shaped cake, pie charts of holiday candy sales, how many cans in a can heart canstruction, where do all of those flowers come from, best deal on bagged candies, making a cardioid … Valentine everything!

Times Square Ball Drop

Share the data in your class and ask what the numbers make your students wonder and what they can observe from the information. Happy New Year!

Winter and holiday posts (16 great activities)

Soda Santa

Winter Solstice – Students appreciate how their latitude effects the darkness of their late afternoon location as they study the earth’s tilt and the logic of daylight hours. 7.G.3, HSG.C, HSG.GMD.4, HSG.MG.1 –  Updated for 2018! Soda Santa – First students guess too…

Sol LeWitt’s pyramid – How might you count those blocks?

Sol LeWitt (1928 – 2007) was a an American artist involved in Conceptual art and Minimalism.  This structure is housed in the garden of the Hirshhorn Museum on the National Mall.  The activity:  Four-sidedPyramid.pdf CCSS:  4.OA.C, 5.OA.B, 7.EE.B, HSF.BF, HSF.LE, HSM, MP5 Two related…

Fibonacci coloring

Let your students simply enjoy coloring our designs or artistically play with the whole creation of Φ designs. Simply coloring our Fibonacci patterns might allow students to ponder the Fibonacci sequence (while they learn more about its beauty) and just…

Wheel of Theodorus

Bring a little art into your math class as you begin to use the Pythagorean theorem and your students first meet irrational numbers.

Hexadecimal coloring

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…

Mixing colors with food dye

What do you wonder about these recipes for coloring? What would happen if I used the wrong recipe (i.e. cake mix instead of egg dying) for coloring my eggs? Do all of the recipes (cake, icing, and eggs) have basically…

Valentine’s Day and the Lunar New Year

Which Sweet Heart candies are the best deal? – Students decide which quantity of Sweet Heart candies is the best deal.  Ratio tables, unit ratios, devising convincing arguments. 6.RP.2, 6.RP.3, 7.RP.2 Sweetheart Candies – unit rate and ratio activity using those little candy…