Consumer spending 2017


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Graph from Wolfram Alpha

We spend a lot of money as consumers in the U.S. In this activity we look at historical data to see if there are any patterns in our spending.  How does our holiday spending show up in these graphs?  What accounts for spikes or drops in spending?  What patterns do you notice?  Which patterns will likely continue and which patterns won't?   Let the class see, think, wonder and discuss in this timely activity.

Shipping Crunch

Now that the shopping season has begun, it's time to get the packages to your homes.  Two big companies take care of a lot of that shipping.  How do they manage that?

The mechanisms for these two shipping giants are huge. Did you ever wonder how they pull it off?  To me they both seem to do a great job.  Is that consistently true.  What are the numbers like?

Thanksgiving, football, Black Friday, and giving

4th Down Final Rec's4th down - should you punt kick or go for a field goal? This is two activities. One is on graph reading. This is perhaps suitable for younger students. The other activity is on data analysis and the creation of the chart shown to the right.  7.NS,  7.SP.C.7,  HSS.MD.A.2,  HSS.MD.B.5,  HSS.MD.B.6,  HSS.MD.B.7

Watson SavesBenjamin-Watson - Watch the video with your class and use our activity to motivate students to figure out who ran a greater distance by using the Pythagorean Theorem.  In the video Teddy Bruschi says that Watson must have ran about 120 yards, maybe even more. Use the video and/or our activity to see if Teddy’s estimate is about right. 8.G.7, G-SRT.8

nfl_homeroad_v2NFL Home field advantage  Students use an infographic to compare NFL team home and away wins. Students consider the best home team, the best away team and consider if NFL teams really do seem to have a home field advantage. 6.RP.1, 6.RP.2, 6.RP.3, 7.SP.4

canstruction-ny-2010-Canstruction This is a 3-act activity about an annual display of creativity, engineering, and design as artists contribute cans of food for the shelters and food banks of their city.  Students analyze, look for patterns, discuss solutions, and finally quantify the number of cans. 4.MD.3, 6.EE.1, 5.MD.5, 7.G.6, HSF.LE.2, MP.2, MP.3, MP.7

Black Friday


When shopping next Friday, students will be able to add some understanding and analysis to the trip after calculating savings in dollars and percents with this timely investigation.

Macy’s 2017 parade

As we get ready for next week's holiday, students can study a map of the annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade, describe, measure and hypothesize why this route was chosen and then calculate how long each band will be marching and at what time they will arrive at the finish.

Students even approximate the volume of two parade balloons including Angry Bird, Red, from the 2015 parade, and the 2013 Wizard of Oz balloon. Very fun and timely with lots of Common Core standards addressed.  Try the whole activity or any of the different tasks in the activity with your class.