Math and Social Studies

Going back to school posts

Who’s going back to school? – Students calculate the historical changes in U.S. population percentages of people who are going back to school and try to formulate reasons for these variations. 6.EE, 6.RP.3, 6.SP, 7.EE, 7.RP.3, 7.SP Does it pay to get…

Labor Day, 2017

In this short activity, students learn the meaning and history of Labor Day as they look for patterns emerging from the Labor Day dates over the past years. Students then use those observed patterns to predict future dates of the…

Does it pay to get educated?

Updated! Why should students do well in school, graduate high school, or go on to college?  In this activity median earnings by various education levels are explored.  Students compare the earnings of a non-high school grad with workers who graduated…

How much does it cost to send you back to school?

Back to school spending is huge and students might not appreciate what it costs to send them back to, essentially, their job of learning.  In this activity students decide what equipment and supplies are necessary, estimate how much that will…

Who’s going back to school?

Updated! In this investigation students calculate the percentage of the U.S. population (current and historically) that are enrolled in K-12 schools. They are asked to draw conclusions from these variations. Finally, they use their calculations to predict the number of…

Saving Water Bottles

In my grocery store they now have these new water bottle refilling stations. You can simply refill your own container with water instead of buying a six-pack of bottled water. Do you think that this is a good idea?  Are they…

Tick time and 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 published maps for all of the…

Memorial Day 2017

This Monday Americans will celebrate Memorial Day.  Who are we honoring?  How did the holiday come about?  Isn’t Memorial Day usually on May 30th? Students learn a little about the history of the holiday, analyze the possibilities for when it is…

Proposed southern border wall

You have probably heard about the proposed border wall that may go up along the U.S./Mexico border.  How much wall needs to be built? How much will that cost? What is that per mile? Per foot? What else could you…

Earth Day, 2017

Saturday, April 22nd is Earth Day There is so much to bring to your classroom to support recycling, conserving resources, studying climate change and protecting our planet. McDonald’s moves toward Antibiotic-free chicken – What will the effects be on costs at the restaurant, costs in…

Patriots’ Day

In Massachusetts, April 17th will be a holiday from school and work in Massachusetts.  We celebrate Patriots’ Day on the 3rd Monday in April to commemorate the beginning of the Revolutionary War and the battles of Lexington and Concord. We…

What does 95% confidence in the poll results mean?

There were polls about who would win the Presidential election. Now there are polls about approval ratings for Congress and President Trump.  You can see the latest poll results here. I get so confused when polling results are reported.  What…

Valentine’s Day activities

Chocolate-raspberry heart-shaped cake – Students build a heart cake and use ratio information to find the quantities of cake and icing resulting from increased dimensions. A parametric heart … with love – Students use unit triangles and manually calculate sine and cosine…