About the Author

Kathryn Dawson

Kathryn (she/her) is excited to join the NGPF team after 9 years of experience as a special education teacher and a tutor. She is a graduate of Cornell University with a degree in policy analysis and management and has a master's degree in education from Brooklyn College. Kathryn is looking forward to bringing her passion for accessibility and educational justice into curriculum design at NGPF. During her free time, Kathryn loves embarking on cooking projects, walking around her Seattle neighborhood with her partner and dog, or lounging in a hammock with a book.

Author: Kathryn Dawson

Math Monday: Linear vs Exponential Growth in Investments

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Jan 09, 2022
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Math
  This Math Monday, we’re exploring a twist on the classic penny doubling problem to teach exponential functions. In this Desmos activity, students compare three hypothetical ways they could collect a lottery prize: $80,000 today, $3000 per day for a month, or $1 that doubles each day for a month. They also practice identifying linear vs exponential growth situations and comparing two exponential functions with different growth rates.  This activity corresponds to the Level 1...

MATH MONDAY: Getting Started with Desmos

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Dec 26, 2021
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Math
  Desmos is a great tool to engage students, simplify grading, and strengthen conceptual understanding. But if you haven’t used Desmos before, you might not know where to start. Never fear! NGPF created a great video tutorial series to walk you through everything you need to know to get started.  What’s Included These six videos cover how to use different features of the Desmos graphing calculator and how to set up your Desmos classroom so you can easily assign activities,...

MATH MONDAY: Investing and Exponential Change Desmos

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Dec 12, 2021
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Math
What can exponential functions teach you about investing? In NGPF’s Desmos activity Investing and Exponential Change, students explore the impact of an investment's starting value, rate of return, and time invested. This activity is a part of the FA-5.5 Application in the new Intro to Investing & Exponential Functions unit.  The Set-Up This activity is built around comparing three investment options: Option 1: Invest $50 at age 30 with an anticipated 9% annual return Option...

MATH MONDAY: Investing Sneak Peak!

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Nov 28, 2021
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Math
This Math Monday, you’ll get a sneak peak of the new Desmos activity Growth of Savings vs Investments, which is part of our upcoming Intro to Investing & Exponential Equations. Stay tuned for that release later this week! This activity introduces students to exponential growth before they’ve learned anything about exponential functions by comparing the growth of $5000 in a savings account with 1% interest and the growth of $1000 in an investment account that earns a 7% annual...

Math Monday: Budgeting with Spreadsheets

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Nov 14, 2021
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Math
This Math Monday, learn how to build a budget spreadsheet with the Financial Algebra lesson FA-4.4 Budgeting Tools. This lesson is a part of the Budgeting & Systems of Inequalities Unit, but it could also be a great way to teach a real-world skill when you have a day or two to fill in between units or days off.  The Lesson Students overview the budgeting apps they could use, practice writing budgeting equations, and then learn the basic spreadsheet skills they’ll need to create a...

MATH MONDAY: Desmos and Complex Systems

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Oct 31, 2021
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Math
This Math Monday, we’re exploring the custom Desmos activity from the Financial Algebra lesson FA-4.8 Constraints and Optimization. The Lesson Students work with complex systems of inequalities and practice finding optimal solutions when faced with numerous constraints.  When working with multiple inequalities, some students have difficulty visualizing the solution set. That’s where Desmos comes in - the interactive graph and sketch features provide valuable support.  The...

Math Monday: Desmos and Linear Inequalities

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Oct 17, 2021
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Math
How can you use Desmos to build student engagement? Today we’re exploring the different Desmos activities from the Financial Algebra lesson FA-4.2 Graphing Linear Inequalities.  The Lesson In this lesson from the Budgeting & Systems of Equations unit, students learn to graph linear inequalities and model different income constraints with inequalities. Throughout the lesson, there are three different opportunities to use Desmos; however, you don’t need to use all three! The...

Math Monday: Scatter Plots and Linear Regression

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Oct 03, 2021
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Math
Math Monday: Scatter Plots and Linear Regression This Math Monday, we’re exploring the lesson Scatter Plots and Linear Regression from the Financial Algebra Checking Unit. If you want a deeper dive into this unit, sign up for Financial Algebra: Unit 2 Checking and Linear Equations, next Tuesday at 4 pm Pacific. The Lesson Students plot real-world data and observe patterns. Then, they learn about correlation and how to use technology to find a linear regression model.  Students have...

Math Monday: How Checking Works

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Sep 19, 2021
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Math
This Math Monday, we’re exploring the Financial Algebra lesson How Checking Works, which kicks off the Checking & Linear Equations Unit. If you want a deeper dive into this unit, sign up for Financial Algebra: Unit 2 Checking and Linear Equations, next Tuesday at 2 pm Pacific. The Lesson This lesson introduces students to the basics of checking accounts, including why you might get a checking account, how you can use it, and why many people are unbanked. Students practice reading a...

Math Monday: Application on Graphing Wages

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Sep 05, 2021
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Math
In this Math Monday, we’ll introduce you to one part of the Financial Algebra curriculum - Application Problems - and walk through an example activity about graphing wages.    What are Application Problems? Application problems are a differentiated set of math activities that are grounded in personal finance content. They’re found in any math lesson from the new Financial Algebra Course.   How can I use Application Problems? One of the biggest advantages of...

Math Monday: Explore Financial Algebra

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Aug 22, 2021
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Math
Last Thursday, we released two units of the new Financial Algebra course - Checking & Linear Equations and Saving & Systems of Equations. Check out the curriculum now on NGPF’s Financial Algebra course page! At our launch event, teachers previewed upcoming topics, dove into lesson resources, and shared their ideas for implementation.  What are teachers saying? ...about the VPD session ..about the course Missed the launch event? Don’t worry, you can still attend...

Math Monday: Introducing Financial Algebra!

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Aug 08, 2021
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Math
The math team is so excited to be sharing our latest project with you - Financial Algebra! On August 19th, we’ll be releasing the first two units of this engaging and relevant semester-long math course. Register now to be the first to explore these new units: Checking & Linear Equations and Saving & Systems of Equations. In this session, you’ll hear more about the course structure, upcoming topics, and release dates, plus have the opportunity to explore the curriculum! What...

Math Monday: Solving Equations and Loans

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Jul 25, 2021
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Math
Solving equations is a high-leverage math skill that can take a lot of practice for students. In today’s Math Monday, we’ll cover one more activity for you to have ready the next time you need to review solving equations.  The Activity: In MATH: Loan Repayments Using Simple Interest, students practice identifying key values from word problems, substituting those values into equations, and solving for a variable.  In the Edpuzzle video, Abby breaks down how to calculate the...

Math Monday: Unit Price

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Jul 11, 2021
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Math
In this Math Monday, we’ll cover one of my favorite math activities - MATH: Unit Price. Calculating unit price is a practical skill that students can immediately use as a valuable shopping hack. It’s also timely, as the news is filled with stories about inflation, cost of living, and shrinkflation. By calculating unit price, students can keep an eye on how much their purchases really cost.  The Activity:  Students practice calculating unit price using real-world examples...

MATH MONDAY: Math Resource Directory

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Jun 27, 2021
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Math
With summer in full swing, you may be thinking about the big-picture for your classes, rather than tomorrow’s lesson plan. Today, we’ll look at the Math Resource Directory, which can help you plan for the year ahead.  The Math Resource Directory The Math Resource Directory links to all NGPF’s activities that include both math and personal finance. Using the Directory, you can browse activities by math topic, personal finance topic, and activity type.  To access the...