Posts Tagged ‘demonstration’

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Post- COVID … We need Middle School Maths that is, like, WOW!

June 9, 2020

10 Quick & Quirky Ways to Make the Maths Classroom Rock!

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1. Tell a Story: Life, Death, and Geometry

This is middle school maths at its best. To understand Wild Fires you must understand the angle of a slope. REQUIREMENTS: Just this story and a white or blackboard to show how the fire speed changes with the slope angle. 

Background Story

On 5th August 1949 Wag Dodge was dropped by parachute with 14 other firefighters into Mann Gulch, a steep-sided gully in a Montana pine forest. Firefighters who parachute in to put out small blazes started by lightning are called Smoke Jumpers. As they worked their way down the sides of the gully the breeze was blowing away from them. But the wind soon shifted. This produced an updraft, which increases the speed of the fire front. The 15 Smoke Jumpers turned and started running for their lives uphill.

What you have to know

Heat rises and so there is a Chimney Effect pushing the fire uphill. The rule of thumb used by firefighters is:

Each 10º increase in slope, the fire front speed doubles. So a fire front traveling at 60 kph (37 mph) becomes a fire front traveling at 120kph (75 mph) moving up a slope of 10º.

What happened to the Smoke Jumpers?

When the fire front changed direction Wag Dodge and 14 other Smoke Jumpers found themselves running for their lives up a steep slope. What did Wag do next?

ANS: Here’s the amazing thing. Wag realised he could not outrun the fire at that point. So he stopped, took off his backpack, took out some MATCHES, and lit a fire in the grassy patch in front of him. Just before the firewall hit he threw himself face down on the burnt patch. He survived. The other 14 firefighters did not. You will find maths exercises here: METRIC UNITS and USA UNITS.

 

Requirements: SmartBoard to Project this link.

Try it first. You might be surprised.

 

3. Urban Myth Busted

Requirements: This story.

Goldfish Memory This is what Epidemiologists do. They find out if there are statistics to support the theory. These mathematicians have been providing vital information during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

According to the ABC news, this myth was busted by a 15-year-old Adelaide schoolboy named Rory Stokes. He fed his goldfish near a Red Lego brick. The fish started anticipating food near the brick. He took it away and replaced it several weeks later. The fish remembered the red brick!!! More here.

Other maths myths to check out:

Chewing food 32 times before swallowing helps you lose weight. Here.

You must drink 8 glasses of water a day. Here.

You are 6 degrees of separation from anyone in the world. Here.

It takes 43 muscles to frown and only 17 to smile. Here.

 

4. Beat this! Drum Rates in BPM.

Requirements: A pencil and a timer on a phone.

Can students manage a drumbeat to popular songs? Here are some songs with their BPMs (Beats per minute listed). 

Tones and I     Dance Monkey  98 BPM.

The Rubens  Live In Life  104 BPM.

Lady Gaga      Bad Romance     118  BPM

……………….Just Dance          119   BPM

Flume   Rushing Back   176  BPM   (Try the middle of the track. It varies)

Panic! At the Disco      186 BPM   (Recommended by Jog.FM for jogging)

More DRUM BEATS and a story about Drummers’ Brains here.

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5...MatHoudini

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Requirements: Phonebook.

Read the instructions at this link. Very simple. And you can amaze the students. Or Vice Versa. A student can amaze a maths teacher.

 

6.  Can you make a Square Bubble?

Requirements: pipe cleaners or stick cube and detergent and a bucket with water.

All ages love this exercise.

How? Read the link here.

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7. Photo Scavenger Hunt

Challenge: Students use a smartphone to take 5 mathsy photos for homework. Ideas here.

However, start in the maths room. Look for parallel lines, angles, rectangles, spheres, parabolas (not in the textbooks). See parabola below.

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8. Barcode Maths

Requirements: A product with a barcode.

Read this link and check the barcode.

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9. Secret Code

Requirements: Box of matches, an accomplice.

Read this link and amaze the class.

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10. Rolling coin Paradox & the Radius 

Requirements: 2 large coins. 20c in Australia, Half-$ USA or 25p UK.

Read this link first. It’s so counterintuitive.

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Trick 1: The Great MATHoudini

September 18, 2018

The Great MATHoudini

Requirements: 1 phone book, Great showmanship

Start by handing one member of the class a sealed envelope. It contains a name that you have seen in your mathematical mind.

All will be revealed at the end of the performance.

Ask one student to write a 3-digit number on the board.

Ask a second student to turn this number around and subtract the smallest number from the largest number.

Ask a third student to turn that number around and add the last two numbers.

Example: N1 = 371.

N2 = 173

N1 – N2 = N3 = 371 – 173 = 198

N4 = 891

N4 – N3 = 891 + 198 = 1089

Give a fourth student a phone book. Ask them to go to page 108 and count down 9 places on the first column and read out the name.

Now open the envelope.

Da! Da!

 

How does it work? The numbers ALWAYS add up to 1089 so you had plenty of time to check out the name in the phone book.

Source: Magic/Menatalism Tips and Tricks

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Trick 2: The Math Teacher Knows

August 4, 2018

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The Math Teacher Knows Everything

Requirements: 1 die, a fanfare would be nice.

You will find a fanfare here.

Ask a student to roll the die, double the number and add 5.  He can show the class the number, but not you.

Ask the student to multiply this number by 5.

Ask the student to roll the die again and add this number to the total.

Now you can tell them the numbers they rolled.

Example:

N1 = 3

Double: 2N1 = 6

Add 5: 2N1 + 5 = 11

x5:   5(2N1 + 5) = 55

Roll dice:

N2 = 4

Add 4:

55 + 4 = 59

The Math Teacher Knows:

Secretly subtracts 25 from this number:

59 – 25 = 34

Da! Da! There are the two numbers rolled.

Source: Magic/Menatalism Tips and Tricks

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3. Funky, Fab and Fantastic. Yeah! That’s Middle School Maths

October 10, 2016

3-funky-fab-and-fantastic

Funky, Fab and Fantastic INTRO

mathspig-at-icme-hamburg-2016Mathspig tried the m&m Algebra Challenge in her ICME 13 Workshop in Hamburg.

BUT … I bought PEANUT m&ms. OH Nooooooooo!

They were the WRONG SHAPE. Deformed m&ms bounced everywhere. All I could do was collect the m&ms in my gloved hands and hand them out to the workshop participants. They seemed to enjoy the failure.

But Mathspig does not give up that easily.

Here is the m&m ALGEBRA CHALLENGE with PLAIN m&ms.

The Great m+m ALGEBRA CHALLENGE

Method:

1. Open a packet of PLAIN m&ms. (Wear white Gloves like the m+ms)

2. TIP onto table. (Put a few books around the edge to define an area.)

3. Sort the m&ms into:

m -UP pile.

m-DOWN pile.

4. REMOVE the m-UP pile.

5. PICK up m-DOWN pile and TIP again.

6. REPEAT until only 1 m+m is left.

The pattern should follow the exponential equation here:

mm-equation

Did it work? Check it out below.

www-gifcreator-me_qjuoel

Who knew one family packet had 366 m+ms?

You’ll find a worked ‘theoretical’ example here.

mm-table

Here’s the ANSWER:

mm-algebra-challenge-answers

Try it. Middle school students have to see

that applying maths in the real world can be tricky but logical.

And a lot of FUN too.

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Lego Algebra

January 15, 2016

Screen shot 2016-01-15 at 2.04.54 PM

This Lego Algebra is designed as s a demonstration, rather than a student activity.

Let x = no. of Lego Bricks.

Now find x:

Lego Algebra 1

Lego Algebra 1a

 

Lego Algebra 1b

Screen shot 2016-01-15 at 2.04.54 PM

Lego Algebra 2

Lego Algebra 2a

Screen shot 2016-01-15 at 2.04.54 PM

 

Lego Algebra 3

Screen shot 2016-01-15 at 2.04.54 PM

Don’t forget there is a lot of algebra fun on Mathspig with Algee Baa: Algebra for Beginners

Mathspig Algee Baa