Sorry for the thin list of entries in the last week. I could tell you some stories…but I won’t. So you are post – exhibition and while we could talk contract work, narratives, project and learning plans, but I got really excited at a website I found called Breathing Earth. It shows real-time the birth rates and death rates world wide and in specific countries. It also shows the CO2 production – greenhouse gasses. So I imagined some interactive small group internet based math advisory activies.
Possible Activities with this Site:
- Define and Explore: Rate.
- Rate – what is it? How can you calculate it? If you were asked to calculate a birth rate or death rate, what information do you need to know? Do you always need two factors? Why? Rate formulas can be found here.
- Rate is used in biology, math, investment, schooling, physics, engineering, statistics, anthropology, etc. – just to name a few (maybe talk about how it can be used in daily life – or is used all around us).
- Birth Rate – How is this calculated? What does this mean? Why does this statistic matter?
- Death Rate – How is this calculated? What does this mean? Why does this statistic matter? (What would looking at the birth and death rates of a country tell you?)
- Have different groups watch the population growth in different countries. Ask them to trace it over time and turn the hard numbers into a rate. Xnumber of births over X amount of time = rate. You might have them do this for four or five periods of time and graph the rate. (this is how we get to slope – not here, not yet – but this is the car that takes you there). Have them play with these ideas and then share with other groups. Make a class graph to look at the rates in different countries. Have a discussion about what this information means. What conclusions can you draw (or not draw) on this info.
- What countries emit the most CO2? (If students don’t know why that matters or what that stands for, discuss this.). Have them play with the numbers.
- Have groups come up with their own challenge question for another group. (You can encourage them to work backward – watch the site for information to add as a question: If you watch the death rate over 10 seconds and then at 60 for X country, how can you figure out the rate? What is it for this example?—etc.)
- Ask students to design their own activity based on this site for another advisory.