Tag: Data and Probability

Labor Day 2021

What is this holiday about?  Are we celebrating the start of school?  New cars? The end of summer? Students look for patterns in the history of Labor Day dates. They then use those observed patterns to predict future dates of the holiday.

Back to school activities

Who’s going back to school? – Students calculate the historical changes in U.S. population percentages of people who are going back to school and try to formulate reasons for these variations. 6.EE, 6.RP.3, 6.SP, 7.EE, 7.RP.3, 7.SP Does it pay to get…

Haiti’s earthquake and the Richter scale

On August 14th, Haiti was hit with a powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake. What does a 7.2 magnitude earthquake imply? What’s a seismometer.  What is the amplitude of a seismograph and what does it mean? Use our Richter scale activity to introduce your students to logarithmic Richter magnitudes.

That’s a big tomato!

These Aussi tomatoes (the tomato on the left of all of the tomatoes) are huge.  How much do you guess one weighs? Can you figure it out?

Memorial Day 2021

Who are we honoring?  How did the holiday come about?  Isn’t Memorial Day usually on May 30th?
Students learn a little about the history of the holiday, analyze the possibilities and patterns for when it is celebrated and make observations about the incredible numbers of deaths that have been caused by war.

Does seeding really matter?

 Engage your students in percents as they get excited about March Madness. Is getting a higher seed really an advantage?  Use 30 years of data to help determine for which seeds it makes sense to pick an upset.  Finally, students determine a general strategy for picking games in the first round.

The Perfect Bracket

What are your chances of picking every game? How does the change from 64 to 65 to now, 68 teams in the field complicate things?  How many brackets would you need to fill out to pick every possibility?  How many reams of paper would you need to print all of those brackets?  Let’s do the math!   Also, check out the video below that explores your odds of picking all games in the tournament perfectly.

3/14 – Pi Day is almost here

We have 8 activities to help you celebrate π in your school and in your math class with activities that demonstrate how π was derived; visually show why π makes sense; show a surprising place where π is used; increase students ability to measure and long divide; applauds the talent of people who can memorize large strings of numbers; and lets students just have fun.

Powerball & MegaMillion Probability

Powerball and MegaMillion jackpots are growing all the time.  Having a terrible chance of winning nearly a BILLION dollars might be a context that engages your students.   Examine compound probability to decide if playing Powerball is worth it.  As part…

How much snow is that?

Start this activity with: What do you notice? What do you wonder? How many inches of snow produced that pile?  How much snow in volume is on top of the car?  How much could that snow weigh? Students try to approximate the…

Winter solstice

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-solstice2020.pdf

Wind chill

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.

Hanukkah already?

3 Hanukkah activities; the amazing Hebrew calendar, soda menorah, and potato latkes. In the calendar activity, students look at the Hebrew calendar and appreciate the incredible mathematics involved in creating a calendar that aligns both the moon’s revolution about the Earth and the Earth’s revolution about the Sun.

Holiday soda displays

The holidays are coming! We found these timely soda displays made up entirely of 12-pack of Coca-Cola products. What questions do you have? Clicking on either image will show them larger in their own windows. Start out the activity by…