Technology Education Know-How

Helping Teachers Teach with Technology

Plan a Vacation to Teach Math Skills

Monday, May 5th, 2008

This week I was talking to a friend about going on their vacation this summer.  As a teacher I had two things going in my head.  One was, “I need a vacation.”  The other thought was, “How can I turn this into a real world learning experience for our students?”

Of course, http://www.priceline.com/ came to my mind, but there are other sites as well that can be used. 

Have your students create a dream vacation.  They will need to plan for travel to and from the departing location, the plane fair, cruise, activities, hotel or condo, transportation while on location, food etc.  You can make this activity as extensive as you’d like.  This activity will help them review the math skills that you have already given them while applying them to real world situations. 

To expand the learning experience I would have my students:

1.       Budget  (money, charts and graphs)

2.       Plan an Itinerary Schedule (time line development, elapsed time, scheduling, and critical thinking)

3.       Map out events (maps)

4.       Use checklists to make sure they have thought of everything for their trip. (Google, travel checklist and you’ll get tons of them.)

5.       Have them write about their trip planning learning experience.

To extend their learning experiences have them break into travel groups and plan their entire vacation on a wiki! 

Enjoy and leave a comment letting me know how you plan to use this in your classroom. 

www.realworldmath.org Launches This Week!

Wednesday, April 9th, 2008

This morning as I was reading a blog post I ended up linked to www.realworldmath.org.  RWM is a new website that “is designed for educators who wish to extend the concepts of the math curriculum beyond the pages of the text.”  Thomas Petra, creator of realworldmath.org, uses Google Earth to teach Math concepts, and he is sharing his ideas and lessons with us.  He has also opened up the doors to allow fellow teachers to contribute to the site with other Google Earth Math Lessons.  I really thing Thomas is on to something here.  You’ll find under the Lessons page 4 categories of lessons, and on the updates page he has two more categories.  So, be sure to check out the whole site! 

This site is only one day old, but I expect to see lots of great things coming from this!  Get the word out by sharing with your teachers.  We can all use new ideas for teaching Math.

If you don’t find a lesson here that you can use, I’m sure you’ll get ideas for your classroom.