8 Best MATH Resources (Aligned to the Core Standards for Mathematical Practice)

Sep 15, 2019

 Thanks to NGPF Fellow Tara Kelley of Harwood Union High School (Stowe, VT) for sharing her favorite math resources: 

1. Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.

Number Chug: Break Even with Soap

All of the Number Chugs work great for this practicing perseverance in problem solving!  With an entry point for many levels of math, students can use their work as a stepping stone to the next level. Students could choose to graph their answers to this particular number chug to support their algebra.

2. Reason abstractly and quantitatively.

Case Study: Payday Loan, Bankruptcy...What Should I Do?

In NGPF’s case studies, students are provided with information in a real-world context.  Students analyze the information and draw their own conclusions. They are a great opportunity to reason abstractly and quantitatively.  I particularly like this one because it requires students to think in the short term and long term and to back their reasoning with calculations.

3. Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.

INTERACTIVE: Win the Powerball!

Some students think they can win but does the math support it?  I suggest students complete the full activity including the math bonus at the end.  Students can share and critique their answers and reasoning with classmates for a dynamic classroom discussion.  My pick for a class discussion: #21.

4. Model with mathematics.

Data Crunch: Why Should You Start Saving at a Young Age?

In the data crunches, students are given a graph or another mathematical model and asked a series of questions relating to that model.  I like this one because is a great opportunity to tie a real-world situation to function transformations. To bump up the math, students could come up with formulas to match the two curves on the graphs.

5. Use appropriate tools strategically.

PROJECT: Build a Basic Budget Spreadsheet

This project will challenge students to create a spreadsheet that tracks their spending as an adult.  I like this project because it teaches students to use a tool (spreadsheet) that is appropriate for this task but also can be used for other math tasks once they understand the power of using the built in formulas.

6. Attend to precision.

INVESTIGATE: 401(k) Missing Millions

This is a retired resource but I love it!  My students seem to be in disbelief when they get their answers and want to go back and check their work for mistakes (even if there aren’t any!). What better way to get students to think about precision?  Here is a blog entry Tim posted several years back on this activity.

7. Look for and make use of structure.

CALCULATE: Compound Interest

This resource directs students to an online calculator to take care of the arithmetic and allows them to focus on the way the changing variables affect the outcome.   To see how students are making sense of the structure, consider altering question #4 so that it gives a certain dollar amount and ask students to come up with different investing scenarios that would accomplish this goal in retirement.

8. Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.

MOVE: To Understand Overdraft Fees

NGPF’s move activities are a great way to get students out of their seats in a structured way.  This activity is a great opportunity for students to look for the “big picture” idea from the repeated reasoning.  A follow up to this activity could be to have students make some generalizations about calculating fees to help them quickly determine what they would pay.  The last three banks on the slide deck provided could be a good way to test their generalizations.


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