Category: Number Sense

Shopping season begins!

Friday, November 23rd marks the beginning of the holiday shopping craze.  Students will be able to add some understanding and analysis to those shopping trips after calculating savings in dollars and percents

Is this possible?

Brian Shoemaker, a Newton, MA mathematics teacher, saw this Dunkin Donuts Mazda traveling down the road.  He wondered if that size coffee cup could really have coffee in it.  Wouldn’t the car rock back on its rear bumper? How much…

Starbucks, 2012

Time to give students some authentic math on a topic they will surely be interested in … Starbucks.  We ask and answer a few questions in this activity. About how many drinks does Starbucks sell in a year? If I…

Humongous vegetables of Alaska

This summer I visited Alaska and truly enjoyed the majesty of the Alaskan scenerey and the many accomplished people that I met. At the time that I was there, the newspaper’s front page was filled with pictures of huge vegetables…

Curiosity landed on Mars

Keep your students up on what’s happening in space while analyzing Curiosity’s speed, the speed of a radio transmission from Mars, and the deceleration involved in a “sky crane” landing.

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?

Particle News

After almost 50 years of looking for the subatomic particle that could validate our standard model of physics, two teams working at the Large Hedron Collider (LHC) have both concluded the existance of the particle. Familiarize your students with the…

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?

Pythagorean Theorem

Use this activity to help your students discover the Pythagorean theorem. Pythagorean theorem work is often skill and drill work with contrived right triangle problems.  In this activity students work with a visual representation of the Pythagorean theorem in order…

Storm cleanup

This activity could be used as an introduction to trig ratios.  Students figure out the approximate length of the huge branch that I have to fell for safety and firewood. After approximating the branch’s length, they calculate how many logs…

Video game download

How long will it take me to download the video game? This can be done as a 3 Act Task.  To get started simply show the video and following picture to your class. ACT ONE: I decided to download a…

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?

It sure is cold out … or is it?

Students ponder the relationship between place latitudes and average January temperatures while they try to discover a correlation. Is this a linear or near linear relationship? … averaging, missing data for averaging, line of best fit, Google Earth, world locations,…