The following Problem Based math lesson covers the concept of transversals crossing parallel lines and their angle relationships. The scenario of the task predicated on needing to determine "safe" and "troublesome" intersections in town. Intersections that are closer to right angles are deemed "safe," while intersections with extreme angles result in limited-vision turns. But that … Continue reading Transversals Lesson: Street Views

## Geometric Constructions Task: Pizza Delivery Regions

The following task is probably best suited for the a beginning unit on Geometric Constructions or use of a compass and straight edge. However, you may also wish to use it as a fun review as students reenter your classrooms in January, groggy from two weeks of sleeping late. The task is adapted from the … Continue reading Geometric Constructions Task: Pizza Delivery Regions

## Routines, Lessons, Problems, and Projects: the DNA of your math classroom

This blog post introduces a new mini-series from Emergent Math: Routines, Lessons, Problems, and Projects. In my time in math classrooms - my own and others' - I've developed a rough taxonomy of activities. Think of these as the Four Elements of a math class: the "Earth, Air, Fire, Water" of math as it were. … Continue reading Routines, Lessons, Problems, and Projects: the DNA of your math classroom

## Stop Thief!, The Fugitive and introducing equations of circles

When I was a kid, we had this super high-tech board game called Stop Thief!. The gist was this: someone committed a crime somewhere on the game board, which was rife with jewelry displays, unattended cash registers and safes. Your job as the detective was to identify where the thief was. The location of the thief … Continue reading Stop Thief!, The Fugitive and introducing equations of circles

## Counting Idling Cars: An Elementary Math Project Based Learning Unit

I'm sitting in my car, waiting to pick up my son from school. It's too cold to wait outside this time of year so I keep the heat on, the engine running, and continue listening to the Dunc'd On Basketball Podcast, the nerdiest podcast about basketball out there. I'm also quite anti-social, so I prefer … Continue reading Counting Idling Cars: An Elementary Math Project Based Learning Unit

## Post-It Problem: Grades 2-3

If imitation is the purest form of flattery, then Graham should be pretty darned flattered. I imitated (read: stole) his The Big Pad problem for slightly younger grades. Graham's task necessitates fractions, which was a bit further down the line for my intended audience, roughly grades two or three. In this task, the giant Post-It is 15 … Continue reading Post-It Problem: Grades 2-3

## Systems of Linear Inequalities: Paleontological Dig

(Editor's note: the original post and activity mistook Paleontology for Archaeology. Archaeology is the study of human made fossils; paleontology is the study of dinosaur remains. The terminology has since been corrected and updated. Thanks to the commenters for the newfound knowledge.) Here's an activity on systems of inequalities that teaches or reinforces the following concepts: … Continue reading Systems of Linear Inequalities: Paleontological Dig

## Just how high was the Big Thompson Flood? And how often will a flood like that occur?

Recently, the family and I were taking in an afternoon in Boulder, CO. After taking in a lunch at the lovely Dushanbe Tea Room we took a stroll along Boulder Creek. Right by a retaining wall stands this object. This monument demarcates how high the waters rise for a flood of various magnitude. Zooming in … Continue reading Just how high was the Big Thompson Flood? And how often will a flood like that occur?

## Shuttling vs. Driving to the Airport

A quick Would You Rather today. I was inspired by a teacher asking students to model airport parking as a means to get at linear equations. I thought I'd frame it similarly, but using the WYR format, because I like the WYR format. I live a good distance away from a major airport, and I … Continue reading Shuttling vs. Driving to the Airport

## Revisiting the revisitation of the 2000 election

A couple years ago I shared a stats-ish problem idea regarding the oh-so-fun 2000 presidential election. The problem was cribbed from a graduate level stats textbook but the data are straightforward enough for a - let's say - 9th grader to grasp. What made me want to revisit the task is some fun data tools … Continue reading Revisiting the revisitation of the 2000 election