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, linear review, extrapolation …


Jeremy Lin is the New York Knicks most startling player.  His story is exciting in that he graduated from Harvard in 2010 and was not immediately drafted into the NBA.  At first he was playing in the NBA Development League (D-League) but has been playing in the starting line-up of the Knicks since early February.

All Star Game 2012

The NBA All Star game is being held on February 26th.  Did you know that this was the third major professional sport all star game in the last month. The Pro Bowl and the NHL All Star Game were also recently held.  MLB has their all star game, called the Mid - Summer Classic in July. In this activity we compare viewership all star games, championship games and typical regular season games in each of the four major North American sports.  How do the ratings of all star games compare to the championship and regular season games in the same sport?

Throwing up again

Anchorage, Alaska has received more than 100 inches of snow this winter.  The height of the tunnel to people's homes is getting higher and higher. When they shovel an area, they have to throw the snow practically straight up from their path to get the snow well into the surrounding snowbanks.

In this activity students experiment with graphing parabolas and manipulating those equations to try to establish a likely trajectory

Valentine’s Cardioid

WojciechSwiderski at the Polish language Wikipedia

Happy Valentine's Day!              cardioid.pdf

This PDF contains four ways students can draw cardioids for Valentine's Day.


Negative Exponents? Ugh

This activity/post is a little different than are usual posts.  We look at a particular math concept and consider how to use context, models and CCSS math practices to increase student understanding.  This activity focuses on negative exponents.  Even if you aren't teaching negative exponents, this is a great opportunity to look at non-linear growth or positive exponents.

We use examples of a plant and a beanstalk growing exponentially and ask kids to determine the height of these plants in the future (growing at the same rate).  Students skip ahead several inputs and are forced to consider a rule to model the situation.