Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Math on the Move (Math 9)

After a lesson on determining the height of objects using similar triangles and shadows I decided it was time to venture forth into the wilderness (or more exactly, the school field).  After a review and some confused questions from a couple of my students we set forth.  Armed with a tape measure, paper and pencil students were asked to determine the height of the flag pole, the height of the north-west corner of the fence around the tennis court, and the height of the statue in front of the school.

Luckily it was sunny so finding our shadows was successful, although for some reason some groups got a more accurate idea of their height when they laid down!  Every group appeared engaged in the lesson and every student was able to turn in their own copy of the results.  A short discussion regarding similar units helped to clarify some of the confusion regarding different answers between groups.

It was interesting to see who took control of the tape measures, who recorded the information and which students were confident in their computation skills and took control of the calculator.  Also, interesting was the speed in which some groups asked for help and the reluctance on the part of some groups that were having some problems in wanting to ask for help (and no, they were not all males!).

All in all, a successful lesson that I felt showed the relevance of the math in an enjoyable way.

Post courtesy of Dave Killick

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