Winter Solstice 2022

It is really dark out now.  Why is that?

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. Is latitude the central angle of the Earth?

The activity: winter-solstice2022.pdf

Three Hanukkah activities

Potato Latkes - updated for 2022 - Little potato pancakes are a traditional food for Hanukkah celebrations. In my mom's recipe, they are salty, deep fried, and delicious. In modern latke recipes the salt and fat are decreased. How do the two recipes compare? 6.RP.A, 7.RP.A, MP6, MP8
Hanukkah is soon - updated for 2022 - Hanukkah begins on Sunday, December 18th. Students appreciate the incredible mathematics involved in creating a calendar (Hebrew calendar) that aligns both the moon's revolution about the Earth and the Earth's revolution about the Sun. 5.NBT, 5.OA, 6.SP, 8.SP, S-IC

Holiday Soda Displays - We found creative soda displays made up of 6-packs of Coca Cola products. Ask students to guess the quantity without counting. Come up with a reasonable range for the number of twelve packs. Find numbers that are too high and too low. 3.MD.5, 3.MD.6, 3.MD.7, 4.NBT.5, 5.NBT.5, 7.SP.5, 7.SP.7a

Do I have enough wrapping paper?

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In this problem based activity students first guess and then try to calculate whether they will have enough paper to wrap this present without taping pieces of wrapping paper together.

wrapping paper

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I have to wrap this box. ⇒    

⇐   with this wrapping paper 

Wind chill

The weather forecasters tell us what the wind chill temperature will feel like. How do they figure out that number?
In this activity students use the National Weather System chart to gauge wind chill, examine the patterns that correlate increasing wind and/or decreasing temperatures, use wind chill numbers to estimate possible wind and temperature factors, and generally become familiar with this sort of interpolation and calculation.  Also check out this windchill calculator, which you can use to quickly find the windchill for a given temperature and wind speed.

The activity:  WindChill.pdf

The Algebra of Magic Squares

  • Have you seen magic squares before?
  • How could a teacher use these puzzles to help students with different number skills?
  • How few blank cells could you leave?
  • Are there any special cells?
  • Look for short-cuts.
  • Try an algebraic formula for creating these puzzles and make some for your classmates.


The activity: MagicSquares.pdf