Category: Math

Celebrate Pi Day and Maths Day

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Two math celebrations are coming up on March 14th: Pi Day and World Maths Day

Pi Day

Pi Day is an annual celebration commemorating the mathematical constant π (pi). Pi Day is observed on March 14 since 3, 1, and 4 are the three most significant digits of π in the decimal form.

Daniel Tammet, a high-functioning autistic savant, holds the European record for reciting pi from memory to 22,514 digits in five hours and nine minutes.


4 Reasons to use Word Problems and 9 Online Resources

Word problems are popular and fun methods of teaching math and English in many schools. Why? See which of these you agree with:

  1. Real-world relevance: They present scenarios that make concepts more tangible and help students see the practical applications of what they are learning.
  2. Critical thinking: They require students analyze information, identify relevant concepts.
  3. Multifaceted learning: Word problems often involve multiple steps that integrate a variety of concepts and skills.
  4. Language skills: Word problems involve reading and understanding written instructions, requiring students interpret written information, extract relevant details, and communicate solutions.

Here are popular online resources to teach about Word Problems (click for updates on this list):

  1. Expii Solve–math word problems and puzzles, lots of them
  2. IXL Word Problems–by grade
  3. Math and Logic Problems
  4. Math Pickle–puzzles, games, and mini competitions
  5. Prodigy Math Word Problems–about 120
  6. Thinking Blocks–free (app)
  7. Word problems–type them in, Wolfram/Alpha provides the answer and the how-to. Amazing.
  8. Word Problems from Math Playground
  9. Would You Rather–more like a justification for decisions using math

–image credit Deposit Photos


Graphing–9 Lesson Plans + 6 Online Resources

Graphing is an important skill for students whether they go to college after High School or start a career. It teaches:

  1. Visualization and Understanding: Graphing helps students visually represent data, functions, and relationships. This visual representation often aids in understanding complex concepts that may be difficult to grasp through purely symbolic or verbal explanations.
  2. Problem Solving: Graphs provide a way to solve problems and make predictions. Whether it’s analyzing trends in data, finding optimal solutions in optimization problems, or understanding the behavior of functions, graphing is a valuable tool for problem-solving.
  3. Communication of Ideas: Graphs provide a universal language for communicating ideas across different fields. Whether in mathematics, science, economics, or engineering, graphs are commonly used to convey information in a concise and understandable manner.
  4. Critical Thinking: Interpreting graphs requires critical thinking skills. Students learn to analyze and interpret data, identify patterns and trends, and make inferences based on the information presented in the graph.
  5. Preparation for Higher Education and Careers: Graphing skills are fundamental in many higher education disciplines and careers. Whether students pursue studies in STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics), social sciences, or business, they will likely encounter situations where graphing skills are essential.
  6. Technology Proficiency: With the prevalence of graphing software and tools, teaching graphing also involves teaching students how to effectively use technology to create and analyze graphs. This proficiency in using graphing software is beneficial in both academic and professional settings.
  7. Promoting Creativity: Graphing can be a creative process, particularly when students are tasked with representing data or functions in innovative ways. Encouraging creativity in graphing assignments can make the learning process more engaging and enjoyable for students.

I start students in 2nd grade with a spreadsheet program. Here are some of the lessons I teach (available for free on Ask a Tech Teacher): (more…)

The Role of Mathematics in Education

The Role of Mathematics in Education: What Professions You Can Get in the Future

Have you ever found yourself pondering the real-world applications of those algebraic formulas or geometric theorems you spent hours trying to decipher in school? Or perhaps, amidst a particularly challenging calculus problem, you’ve questioned how this abstract world of numbers and symbols could possibly influence your future career? Well, you’re not alone. Mathematics, often dubbed the universal language, plays a pivotal role in shaping the educational foundation necessary for a plethora of professions. Let’s dive into the essence of mathematics in education and uncover the vast array of future career opportunities it unlocks. (more…)

#72: How to Check Your Math in a Spreadsheet

This is one of the most popular lessons I teach to Excel beginners. It is relevant, instantly usable and makes sense from the beginning. Before you start this one, you might want to complete Project 70 and 71.

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–from 55 Technology Projects for the Digital Classroom

–image credit Deposit Photos

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“The content presented in this blog is the result of my creative imagination and not intended for use, reproduction, or incorporation into any artificial intelligence training or machine learning systems without prior written consent from the author.”

Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 years. She is the editor/author of over a hundred tech ed resources including a K-12 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum. She is an adjunct professor in tech ed, Master Teacher, webmaster for four blogs, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, contributor to NEA Today, and author of the tech thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and Twenty-four Days. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.

10 Online Video Resources About Math

There are great reasons to use online videos to learn math:

  • Visual Learning: for many, this makes complex topics easier to understand 
  • Flexibility: access content at their own pace 
  • Engagement: engaging and interactive
  • Review and Replay: revisit specific sections of a video as many times as needed to reinforce understanding.
  • Supplementary Learning: complement traditional learning

Here are ten online resources for teaching math that I think you’ll like (for updates to this list, click here): (more…)

Teaching Kids to Use Tally Charts

Teaching Kids to Use Tally Charts: Fun and Educational Activities

As parents and educators, we are constantly on the lookout for creative and engaging ways to teach children important skills. One such skill is the ability to use tally charts, which are a simple and effective way to collect and organize data. Tally charts are not only a fundamental part of mathematics and statistics, but they also play a crucial role in helping children develop their analytical and observational skills. In this blog post, we will explore various fun and educational activities that can help you teach kids how to use tally charts effectively.

What Are Tally Charts?

Before we dive into the activities, let’s briefly explain what tally charts are. Tally charts are a way to represent and count data quickly and efficiently. They consist of a series of vertical lines, or strokes, with every fifth line drawn diagonally to make counting easier. Each group of five strokes represents a specific quantity, such as five, ten, or fifteen.

Tally charts are commonly used to collect and display data in a simple and visual format. They are especially useful when you want to count the occurrences of different items or events and compare the quantities. Tally charts are widely used in various fields, including science, sports, and business, making them an essential skill for children to learn. (more…)

7 Highly Useful Tech Skills to Develop if You’re Aiming for a Career in Accounting

I used to be pretty good at accounting because I was a whiz with spreadsheets and data analysis. That changed when accounting began relying heavily on technology. Well, to be honest, traditional accounting–financial analysis, auditing, and tax knowledge–might still revolve around my sweet spots, but the rest, I now hire skilled professionals.

And I’m not the only one who realizes the importance of tech skills in accounting has changed. One of our Ask a Tech Teacher members has a great article outlining the tech skills you’ll want to look at if you’re interesting in pursuing an accounting career after high school:

7 Highly Useful Tech Skills to Develop if You’re Aiming for a Career in Accounting

In the digital era, the accounting industry has tightened its embrace of technology, transforming traditional roles into tech-oriented ones. Undeniably, tech skills have become just as essential as understanding debit and credit for accountants as computers become necessary for work. 

These technological competencies allow accountants to streamline their work, provide more in-depth analysis, and enhance decision-making processes. Whether you’re just stepping into the world of accounting or aspiring to advance your career, sharpening your tech skills will unlock new opportunities and make you a much sought-after professional in this industry.


8 Great Websites and Apps to Help Kids With Fractions

Fractions are not the easiest of math concepts to learn (or teach), yet are arguably one of the most oft applied to our daily lives. Teachers have long sought intuitive methods to teach fractions that are less frustrating than worksheets and more effective than rote drills. Luckily, there are a lot of online apps on offer that are accessible to students and make learning much easier than traditional methods. The Ask a Tech Teacher crew has eight of their favorites to share today: 

8 Great Websites and Apps to Help Kids With Fractions

Understanding fractions is an essential pillar of every child’s mathematical foundation. Yet, it can often be a teaching challenge due to its complex nature.

With the advent of modern technology, learning this critical skill doesn’t have to feel like a chore anymore. A wealth of educational websites and apps are now readily available that make learning fractions engaging and fun for children.

These digital tools use interactive games, dynamic visual aids, and graded tasks designed to simplify fractional concepts and enhance mastery. So let’s look at eight of the top options worth weighing up today.


#75: Tessellations in Excel

Tessellations are repetitive patterns of shapes that cover a surface without overlapping. With Excel (or another spreadsheet program), you can create tessellations by arranging shapes in a grid and using formulas and formatting options to make the patterns visually appealing. Here’s a step-by-step lesson plan to use Excel or another spreadsheet program to teach tessellations: