Ideas for teaching high school and middle school math. Innovative approaches that address the changing ways that today's student learns material.
 
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I love solving problems. There is something very satisfying to me about figuring out a solution. This is amplified when a friend asks me a math question and when the answer has real world applications. 

This past Wednesday, a dear friend who is pericardiac physical therapist sent me the following text (shown to the left) asking me to convert feet/seconds to miles/hour. I was thrilled to but I was shopping with no pen and only had receipts for paper. I paused shopping and worked out the problem (thank you dimensional analysis) after borrowing a pen from a cashier. 

I took a picture of my work and sent her the solution.  Excited to teach dimensional analysis this year and use this as an example.  


***Correction update***
Whoops. The conversion is actually 8.2 miles per hour.  I forgot to type in a '0' in phone calculator and messed up the decimal. Thanks for pointing this out NS!

 


Comments

Annie Boyd
07/15/2013 06:56

How could you turn this into a common core math lesson?

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Natalie Turbiville
07/28/2013 17:50

Great question. I would pose this as an hook or closing in coordinate algebra in Unit 1 where dimensional analysis comes up. It is a great "See students, you do use this stuff in real life" example.

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NS
07/17/2013 07:11

I believe you're off a decimal place...it should be 8.2 mph.

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Natalie Turbiville
07/28/2013 17:48

You are correct! I should of checked my work and been a little more careful in the store. Thank you for pointing this out.

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Susan
07/19/2013 15:11

I love this one. :) This is something students can relate to. Thanks for sharing!

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Natalie Turbiville
07/28/2013 17:50

Yes! I love finding those things that students can relate to. Thanks for posting.

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07/28/2013 15:11

Your blog is fantastic! I nominated you for a Liebster Award: http://msmathmadness.blogspot.com/2013/07/liebster-award.html

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Natalie Turbiville
07/28/2013 17:51

Thanks for reading and what an honor to be nominated!

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Patricia Gartman
04/22/2014 19:28

What a great real world application! I have also been called at various times by family and friends looking for answers to, what I would consider, basic math problems. It truly is amazing the amount of people in my life that can work procedural math but application escapes them. Hopefully, the new standards will begin to bring about change for the better.

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Ideas for teaching high school and middle school math. Innovative approaches that address the changing ways that today's student learns material.