Math and Social Studies

Immigration numbers

Use our data to do some analysis about the issues and changes in immigration policy and numbers.  This could be a very interesting day of mathematics.

Cost of light bulbs – updated!

Finally updated! There’s a lot of misinformation out there about the cost to consumers of CFL and LED bulbs and the savings in energy and money that could be realized. Let your students “do the math” and realize some of the…

Asian giant hornets

Vespa mandarinia In AnKang, China in Shaanxi province, giant hornets have injured and killed scores of people.  Government officials are now trying to eradicate these insect’s hives and have destroyed about  4,500 nests so far.  The Asian giant hornet is the…

Really old “New Math”

Tom Lehrer is a singer, songwriter, satirist, pianist and mathematician who has written some wonderful songs. In 1959 he wrote a song called “New math”.  At that time, much of mathematics teaching was reoriented.  Parents of elementary school aged children…

Methane math

Carbon dioxide and methane are our two most prevalent human-contributed greenhouse gases.  This holstein cow is one of many huge contributors to our methane production.  Let students calculate percentages of greenhouse gas production from cars, cows, and people.  We’ve got…

Jackie Robinson

The movie “42” is the story of Jackie Robinson, a baseball player who became the first African-American to play in Major League Baseball since the game was segregated in the 1890’s. Robinson broke the baseball color barrier when the Brooklyn Dodgers started him in April, 1947.  He contributed to…

Patriots’ Day

Monday, April 17th, 2017, is the official holiday this year to remember the Battles of Lexington and Concord that began the Revolutionary War 242 years ago in 1775. (The actual date was April 19th, 1775) Both Paul Revere and the…

Lifespan of a meme, the Harlem Shake

Five friends who skateboard and video tape made up a strange dance one afternoon and filmed it on February 2nd.  Now the whole world knows them and their dance … weird.  This is the story of the life of a…

Happy 14th B’ak’tun!

Clicking on this map of the Mayan territories will open it larger and in a new window Luckily, we’ve passed 12/21/2012 and the world is still here and we’ve made it into the start of the next Mayan calendar cycle…

The Fiscal Cliff – sounds scary

We’ve used a graphic to help students understand what is meant by the Fiscal Cliff.  Students will understand some of the terms and study the consequences of two upcoming scenarios.  They will be deducing information from the graphic.

Olympic schedule

I found this graphic online that should help me figure out when to try to watch an Olympic event on any day.  The chart seems a little confusing.  Can your students help me figure it out?

My Facebook IPO investment

What is an IPO?  Are they always good investments? Students analyze charts and data, learn a little about investing, calculate percent loss (unfortunately), and make some Facebook stock projections. facebook-IPO.pdf


Act One: The world record for the tallest structure made of Legos was recently set in Seoul, South Korea.  Check out the pictures and video below: How much do you estimate that it costs for only the materials, to build this tower?

Budget 2012

Visit this debt clock website and ask students to make some observations, What do you see happening on this clock? When will the U. S. hit the next trillion dollars deficit milestone? How fast is the deficit increasing every hour?

The Euro and the international debt crisis

Lately the news is filled with talk of the Euro, US foreign debt, the fragility of European monetary systems, and the interdependence of all of these crisis. In this activity students become familiar with the Euro, practice translating the Euro’s…