Monday, 15 December 2014

iHeart Math Holiday Hop

Image Map

Note - Use this image to help you "hop" around. The advent calendar has a link to each day of the month, HOWEVER, just like a real advent calendar, the posts do not "unlock" until 9 pm EST the night before the calendar date.

I am so excited to be joining in with this amazing group of math bloggers to bring you a few stocking stuffers and gifts for the holidays. I hope you have been enjoying the "iHeart Math Holiday Hop" so far. If this is your first time reading about it, make sure to go back up to the top of this post and check out the previous 15 days for some amazing ideas and freebies from your favourite Math teacher-authors!

Stocking Stuffer #1 - Giving Back

I am always finding different ways to give back, especially around the holidays. I make it a big deal in my classroom, and really emphasize the importance of empathy to my students. In today's world it is so easy to lose track of how fortunate we really are, especially for teenagers!

The things you do for yourself are gone when you are gone, but the things you do for others remain as your legacy.  – Kalu Kalu

As some of you know, I am not in the classroom this year as I am enjoying my maternity leave with my sons. So, I wasn't in a position to organise anything at school. That doesn't mean I wasn't going to find a way to give back..while instilling a sense of empathy in my 3 year old son as well. He helped me organize two boxes of gifts for "Operation Christmas Child", he donated his boots and snow pants that no longer fit to "Koats 4 Kids", and we also collected hamper items for the "Christmas Cheer Board". 

Stocking Stuffer #2 - Holiday Math Tip

The holidays are all the students are talking about this week, so use that to your advantage. Bring in some flyers and have students make a wish list of items they would love to receive. Once they have compiled their wish list have them calculate just how much their parents will have to spend, including tax, to make their dreams come true!
To add a little more excitement, and math, the next day tell them that all the items have been marked down for a final pre-Christmas sale! They need to re-calculate the cost with the new discount. I randomly have students pick a task tag, then assign a value to the color card they picked. I always get a kick out of how excited the kids get who end up with the biggest discount.

When the students come back from their holidays, have them write about their experiences in their math journal, the only catch is that they have to include as many numbers in their journal entry as possible! Call it "My Holiday in Numbers"!

...and finally, a little something from me to you. Click on the present below to "open" it! Enjoy!

Hopefully my gift will help keep your students engaged in math class these last few days.

Blair at One Lesson at a Time is the next stop on the hop! Make sure to check out what goodies she has for you tomorrow!

Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Math is Real Life - December 2014 Edition

 I am happy to once again join up with the fabulous linky hosted by Miss Math Dork, 4mulafun, The Teacher Studio, and Teaching to Inspire in 5th! 

Last year was our first Christmas in our new house, and when it came to putting up the Christmas lights...our house looked a little sad. The amount of lights it took to decorate our old house, covered a small fraction of our new house. My husband and I started to dream of creating this winter wonderland, but I wasn't about to shell out hundreds of dollars on lights when I knew they would be going on sale within a month! So our dreams of a colourful lit up house would have to wait a year.

Fast forward to this year, we have a lot more lights...thanks to hitting up the clearance racks after Christmas (additional 60% off!!)...but do we have enough?

When standing before the clearance rack my husband and I did a little estimating to determine how many boxes of lights we would need. Each box of lights was 33 feet, 3 inches long. We knew we wanted to put lights up along the eavestroughs and peaks of the roof, but of course we didn't think to actually measure how much we would need before hitting the stores.

My husband had a rough idea of the dimensions, so using a little mental math and estimation, we decided upon 4 more boxes, on top of the 2 we already had. That gave us 199 feet and 6 inches to work with.

So up on the ladder went my husband while I nervously held the bottom steady. Attaching the lights to the eavestroughs wasn't so bad but I was holding my breath while he put them along the peaks of our roof.

Did you's estimated that more than 15,000 people end up in emergency rooms from injuries resulting from hanging holiday decorations?!?!
I didn't want to become one of those people!

Turns out that one set of lights was exactly the length of the peaks on our roof.

In the end we had enough lights that we even brought them down one side of the house and ran them along our foundation. I'd say our estimation skills were on target.

Once the lights were up and my husband was back on solid ground...we still weren't quite happy with how it looked...we needed more. So off to the store we went and bought 2 more boxes (luckily on sale...this time only 25% off)

The extra lights we wrapped around the railings of our front porch.

Voila we have lights!

I still might hit up the clearance section again this year. I think lights around the garage door would really give it a finished look!

How did you use math this month in your life?