Today I was inspired to join Miss Math Dork in her Math Is Real Life series! Although this math problem is for school, it is a real life teacher problem, so I think that qualifies. :)
My task was to create not one, but two posters this year for our 100s Day of School math competition. Although I posted about this last year over at Shut the Door and Teach, this year Mr. E next door wanted his class to join in on the fun. This time there would be 2 fourth grade classes competing to solve 100 2 digit by 2 digit multiplication problems.
Therefore, my first task was simple enough. I needed to find half so I divided by 2.
The next task was a little more complex, and exactly the sort of problem that I've asked my fourth graders to find. We had decided to be the "Red Team" and the "Blue Team," and I had 2 18" x 24" poster boards in red and blue. The math questions I had were:
- Are the posters big enough for 50 Post Its each?
- Which area model will work best for my Post Its?
I also love that B and C turned out to be the same, just with a different layout. Therefore I only had to carry on with two options as I continued.
My next math problem is that each sticky note is 3" by 3." Therefore I had to multiply the length and width of each row and column by 3.
Seems straightforward, however when thinking about the real world application, a poster requires a bit of "wiggle room." Practically speaking, I need about 1/4" of space in between each sticky note if we're going to be taking them down and putting them back up again. That means that after the first 4 rows/columns, I need another inch. For the 5th through 8th row, I need a second inch, and so on.
(Just noticed a misspelling on one of the "columns," sorry). Notice that labels became important here! I admit, when I was writing this out I originally added on to the inches, not to the rows/columns, but I quickly realized my numbers were way too large. By labeling columns, rows, and inches, I was able to keep track of where to add the extra few inches.
The result: Sadly, my 18" by 24" poster board was NOT going to work for this project. Luckily, in true teacher fashion, I had spare chart paper that was plenty large enough. Here are the results:
A little planning and math know-how saved me from having to redo at least one poster! Now they're ready for Thursday (weather permitting). I can't wait to show them off to the fourth graders.
If you have a Math Is Real Life story, why not join Miss Math Dork's linky?
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