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Real Life Math - Book 1

Exploring mathematical concepts in practical everyday situations.

Real Life Math - Book 1 by David J. Cohen
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The initial activities in this blackline master book are designed to help students understand and appreciate the depth of math in their everyday world. "Making Connections" is a great activity to start opening children’s eyes to the real world of math. The "Math Surveys" are an excellent homework activity, where children can engage their family in the application and practicality of real life math. The "Math in News" and "Math in Advertising" sections will help children read more into what they hear, read and see every day. Each section contains a wide cross section of mathematical concepts for students to tackle and become immersed in. For example, this could include: multiplication, adding, division, subtraction, rounding, analogue and digital clocks, graphing and interpreting data, identifying shapes, decimals, scales, location, maps, direction, working with temperatures, chance, graphing and interpreting data, area, estimation, prime numbers, identifying shapes, calendars and ordering. The concepts covered are listed at the beginning of each section. These activities and questions also lend themselves to further discussion about the practical application of math concepts. There are many "open-ended" questions throughout the book. Students attempting open-ended questions for the first time often get confused and think they don’t have enough information to successfully answer the question. To help understand the nature of these questions, write a sample question on the board and invite children to list the information that they think is missing. Students will soon discover that "could" type questions can include several different answers and subsequently, they have all the information they need in order to answer the question. Practising with open-ended questions will soon tune their thinking into a more flexible and deeper approach in finding different solutions to the same problem. The activities in this book can be issued as weekly assignments or as a catalyst for working cooperatively in small groups and with partners.
Ready-Ed Publications; May 2004
38 pages; ISBN 9781863975933
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Title: Real Life Math - Book 1
Author: David J. Cohen

Making Connections: Your Assignments

Select from the following:

Write a passage explaining the importance of math in everyday life. Answer these questions:

• How is math useful? • Why is math important? • What jobs use math? • What things do you do that use math?

Make a PowerPoint presentation based on your findings about the importance of math to people’s everyday life.

Hold a debate on the topic "Math is not as important as it used to be". Select teams and a moderator. Allow the class to vote for who they think won the debate. Write up a report on the debate and include which side you support. Give reasons for your opinions.

Write and perform a play about a selected famous mathematician such as Pythagoras, Galileo or Archimedes.

Compile a list of films and books that involve a math theme. E.g. Books - The Code Book by Simon Singh, Three Little Pigs;

Films - A Beautiful Mind, Pi.

Write a film review from a mathematical point of view. Explain the basic mathematical concepts used in the film. You might like to look up some websites to help you with the review.

Are there any jobs that you can think of that do not require the use of ANY mathematical concepts? Investigate and report back your findings.

Use the interview sheet on the next page to establish the extent people rely on math in their everyday lives. Discuss your findings with the class.