**This math mural is on a high school wall, somewhere. It works because it has a street art vibe. Not a grade school math book look. That’s cool. **

**Why not do something like this for your school.**

Just another WordPress.com weblog

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**Students absorb maths fear and loathing from peers, siblings, parents and the culture. eg.**

From the TwoFatDudes blog.

**Invite interesting guest speakers to talk to students. Other subjects do this. Bring in a cool young ex-student and attitudes can change, fast.**

**Otherwise show them these videos. The first video especially is AWESOME and totally, totally COOL.**

**Here are their blogs:**

Maths stories about death, tragedy and comedy in maths

On Scientific Notation

On Significant Figures and using significant figures this video has had 1 MILLION hits.

Structure and Function of the Brain

**Maths Photo Scavenger Hunt Worksheet PDF**

**More interesting Maths Selfies here.**

Students worry about getting the answer wrong in front of the class because they believe that maths answers are always either RIGHT or WRONG.

The maths we need in the REAL world often involves open ended questions. Think of finding directions on Google Maps. What is the best way to get from A to B? One route might be shorter but include tollways another might involve longer distances but less traffic.

Text book problems are often repetitive with RIGHT answers at the back of the book. But in the real world maths problems nearly always involve THINKING. eg. A building design might require specific engineering maths. Now add costing! That’s an open question. There are many options. Maybe the costing will then change the engineering. Build 20 stories instead of 25.

Thinking Outside the box in Education: Info and Toolbox: **here**

Prof **Peter Liljedahl,** Faculty of Edu, Simon Fraser Uni, Canada, advocates open ended questions in the maths classroom.

Here are some of his examples for Year 7 -9 (Download pdf file at the link):

You have won tickets to a concert in Toronto but must plan your trip using flight times to arrive at the concert by 9pm.

You are in a bike race and have to use a street bike and trail bike, but one bike must be left somewhere on the route. You travel at different speeds depending on which bike you use. What route do you take? (A basic map is included.)

Maths is often about playing around with answers. This is how play led a class of 12 year olds to produce a peer reviewed research paper published in a science journal.

Community Maths can involve the school community or the wider, local community. The aim is to get maths out of the classroom and make it a hands-on experience.

Set up displays, posters, demonstrations or art/maths projects in your school library, gym or school yard or take some interesting maths to the local library, strip mall, town hall, local gardens or shopping mall. It will mean planning the project, collecting the materials and making a phone call to the local, say, librarian, but libraries, for instance, welcome community involvement.

Here are just some community maths project ideas.

Major maths conferences around the world have **poster displays**. So why not a display of students maths posters in your school library or local library or even a nearby shopping mall. And students should be present at allocated times to explain their poster to other students, parents or members of the public.

Roosevelt Middle School students Jacob Klausner and Oliver Adelson WEST ORANGE, NJ, who were finalists heading to the **National MathCon Competition.**

Some of the best middle school maths posters can be found at **MathsCareers**, UK. Here are some posters from the 2016 competitions.

Winner 9 – 11 years Maths Poster Competition

Fatimah Patel Preston Girls High School

Runner Up 9 – 11 years Maths Poster Competition

Maja Kowalska McAuley Catholic High School

Winner 12-13 years Maths and Music Poster Competition

Laeticia Junanto Bancrofts School

Maths students can construct displays that involve interesting maths. The most amazing maths dispalys Mathspig has seen were at the 13e Salon Culture & Jeux Mathematique in Paris. Here is LAGA Phd student Attouchi @ the** 13e Salon Culture & Jeux Mathematique in Paris.**

She was showing students how to use a graph to create anamorphic projections. More detailed instructions **here!!!**

Palestinian Maths teacher Daina Taimina has many zany ideas. You’ll more Creative Maths ideas** here.**

Mentalist Maths … OK. This may include some Card Tricks … but they’re amazing. You’ll find 10 amazing Mentalist Math Tricks **here**.

Make some interesting cubes** here.**

Give students a variety of maths challenges they have to solve

like these Maths Mystery Box Challenges **here.**

Or let students explore some of the inspiring maths websites and pick a project. You will love the amazing German website **IMAGINARY**. It’s in English and has some fascinating videos!!!!!

Perhaps students could construct double pendulum like this one demonstrated at the MiMa-Museum, Oberwolfach, Germany. Mathspig can’t stop watching it. Fascinating!!!!!!! The double pendulum has some demanding trigonometry, but at the middle school level the 2D graph traced by the lower pendulum is fascinating enough (Below). And maths can provide equations for this movement. That’s impressive.

I started my maths workshop in Hamburg by stirring up some friendly rivalry. And what better way to do this than by using statistics.

Australia is 21.5 times the area of Germany. So I counted off 22 workshop participants and pointed to one saying ‘Your’re Germany! Ha!’ Here’s another way to compare areas:

Germany has 3.5 times the population of Australia.

But the really interesting questions are:

Who drinks more beer?

Who eats more meat?

Here are the answers to these and other interesting questions from the introduction to my workshop with apologies to Brisbane and Perth:

**The Maths Mystery Box is a great treasure chest to take into maths classes. It can be used an an extension exercise or to engage some disengaged students.**

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**The IDEA is to use concrete objects and write a maths problem to go with the object. (See examples below) The appeal of the MATHS MYSTERY BOX is that it involves CONCRETE THINKING, sort of. All text books involve ABSTRACT thinking, which some students do not like. **

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**A student picks a maths problem from the box. A problem can be simple or complex. But it is not just a maths problem. The student gets to hold an object in their hand. They have to devise their own method of approach. And they must be resourceful. ie. use equipment at hand eg. their phone as a stop watch. Students like this activity. Even maths teachers like this activity as Mathspig found out at her workshop in Hamburg.**

**This is what the graph should look like.**

**Bob the Beetle moves very fast and students have to use available tools eg. phones to calculate his speed.**

**You’ll find the answer here.**

**Safety Lecture: Do not flick at anyone. But it is fun.**