Posts Tagged ‘challenge’

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5. It’s Too Hard

September 29, 2017

The Complaint:  

It’s too hard!………………

………………………………………………………………………….

The Cause:

This response often results when students face some new topic – often beyond numbers – that students can’t handle on auto pilot. Instead of working through the problem, they crash and burn.

………………………………………………………………………….

The Solution: 

I’m going to tell you a story. Bear with me for a minute. You did maths from Grade 1 to 6. You’re cool. No major dramas. Then something happens. A new topic, perhaps. Or a new teacher and a new topic. You don’t get it. You sit there looking confused. And then you do this. You say ‘I can’t do maths’( See post here) or ‘It’s too hard’.

In my maths teacher days terror topics were:

Long division

Algebra

Dividing Fractions

Geometry (because so few students listen to what the teacher is saying.)

Trigonometry (Lot of, you know, things to learn. Equations and stuff.)

So you stop doing maths. You retire at the age of, maybe, 13 years.

If you hit the MATHS WALL, here’s what you have to do. Back up a bit. Do some warm up maths on the topic. It’s out there.

eg. The Kahn Academy. I’m not saying it is easy. (See THE MATHS SPEECH here) I’m telling you it is doable. Practise.

Maths is always TOO HARD when you give up. But when you try amazing things can happen.

Besides, if a raccoon can do it.

Here is an exercise that you didn’t think you could do. But it is entirley doable by Middle School students with patience.

Karate Maths of OUCH! That hurts!


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7c. Crack a Security Code for Middle School………… Yes! Really!

August 27, 2017


NB: This post has been updated twice. Disraeli said that if you want to become acquainted with a subject, write about it!!!! Mathspig’s head nearly exploded writing about this subject. But I’ve got it down to its simplest form now. One that Mathspig  finally understands.

The Complaint: Maths is really SCARY!…………….

………………………………………………………………………….

The Cause:

Some students think maths is always right or wrong and they are scared of making mistakes.

………………………………………………………………………….

The Solution:

Tackle problems that can’t be solved even by a computer. Students can only guess the answer and then test it. Anyone can make a guess. Work in groups. Every member of the group can contribute as students explore this maths.

………………………………………………………………………….

The Challenge:……………………………………………………….

Can you crack a security encryption code?….………………………………………………..

……………………..…………………….……………………………………………………………

Topics:

Prime Numbers, Really BIG numbers……………………..

…………………………………………………………………………

Prime Numbers Hide Your Secrets: SLATE

Remember the best online calculator is the WEB 2.0 Calc. NOTE: This is a secure website and you can check on its KEYCHAIN too.

You will find a fantastic list of Prime Numbers here.

Crack a Security Code WORKSHEET & ANS

Mathspig thanks Prof Kate Smith-Miles, Prof of Applied Maths, Monash University for the information about Keychains. Kate has used KEYCHAIN exercises with primary school students. They really enjoyed going home and showing their parents how to find a Keychain on the computer.

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8. When will I EVER use this maths?

August 19, 2017

The Complaint: I’ll Never Use This Maths!………………

………………………………………………………………………….

The Cause:

Text book exercises that are good for skill building, but appear irrelevant to the real world.

………………………………………………………………………….

The Solution:

You are going to use this maths NOW

………………………………………………………………………….

8a. Calculate Your Daily Iron Intake

8b. How much blood can YOU lose and survive?  

METRIC………………………………………………………………..

USA Units………………………………………………………..

8c. What Volume of Alcohol is Lethal?

 

 

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8a. Calculate Your Daily Iron Intake

August 19, 2017

The Complaint

8a: When will I EVER use this maths?

The Cause:

Students doing repetitive text book exercises without using maths to solve REAL WORLD problems.

The Solution:

You are going to use this maths NOW.

Calculate Your Daily Iron Intake

TOPICS: Decimals, %, weight units (METRIC) 

Some information you need. 

Iron (Chemical symbol:Fe) content in food is recorded in mg because there are only small amounts of iron in food.

1 g = 1000 mg

eg. 1 paper clip = 0.5 g = 500 mg

     Iron in 2 teaspoon peanut butter = 0.19 mg

Full Page Worksheet PDF:Daily Iron Intake Calculation Work Sheet

WORKED EXAMPLE: Breakfast

More info here

 

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8b. How much blood can YOU lose and survive? ……………METRIC

August 16, 2017

The Complaint

8b: When will I EVER use this maths?

The Cause:

Students doing repetitive text book exercises without using maths to solve REAL WORLD problems.

The Solution:

You are going to use this maths NOW…………………..

……………………………………………………………………………….

How much blood can YOU lose and survive?

………….METRIC UNITS

Remember the best calculator to use is the WEB 2.0 Calculator as it shows the worked equation as you go. 

CAREERS: It’s not only health workers who need to understand these calculations, but also creatives running health campaigns online, on TV, radio and in magazines.

TOPICS: Decimals, %, algebra, vol, weight units (METRIC) 

PDF WORKSHEET HERE:How much blood can you lose and still survive? WORKSHEET METRIC

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8b. How much blood can YOU lose and survive? ……………USA Units

August 16, 2017

The Complaint

8b: When will I EVER use this maths?

The Cause:

Students doing repetitive text book exercises without using maths to solve REAL WORLD problems.

The Solution:

You are going to use this maths NOW…………………..

……………………………………………………………………………….

How much blood can YOU lose and survive?

………….USA Units

Remember the best calculator to use is the WEB 2.0 Calculator as it shows the worked equation as you go. 

CAREERS: It’s not only health workers who need to understand these calculations, but also creatives running health campaigns online, on TV, radio and in magazines.

TOPICS: Decimals, %, algebra, vol, weight units (USA UNITS) 

PDF WORKSHEET HERE:How much blood can you lose and still survive? WORKSHEET USA UNITS

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8c. What Volume of Alcohol is Lethal?

August 14, 2017

The Complaint

8c: I Will Never Use this Maths

The Solution:

You are going to use this maths NOW……………..

……………………………………………………………………..

How much alcohol will kill you?

TOPICS: Decimals, %, algebra, vol, weight units (Metric)

At low levels of consumption alcohol impairs decision making and inhibits coordination. It makes you DUMB and CLUMSY, which can cause serious injuries if you, say, fall down stairs.

Legal Age to Buy or Sell Alcohol USA: 21 years

Legal Age to Buy or sell Alcohol AUST, NZ & UK: 18 Years

Legal Age to Buy or sell Alcohol CANADA: 18 – 19 Years depending on region.

At higher levels of consumption ALCOHOL can kill. It is a depressant. It acts on your central nervous system. It can STOP YOU BREATHING.

WORKSHEET PDF:  How Much Alcohol Would Kill You? WORKSHEET

WORKED EXAMPLE

1. Calculate the weight of (pure) alcohol or ethanol in the following standard drinks using the following information:

Now Ethanol =  0.79 gm/ml

More information @ alcohol.org.nz