Category Archives: Seasonal

309. Christmaths news

Hello lovely people!

Unfortunately, due to work (i.e. being a full time teacher) I haven’t had time to upload my recent ideas or resources, however the usual service should resume after Christmas. Speaking of which – don’t forget to check out the Christmaths resources on the site:

Christmaths Cheer

 

293. Boxing Bounds

I thought this would make a nice little starter – address a few different topics, bit of problem solving, all over in 15 minutes. How wrong I was!

The Question: A company packs toys into boxes which measure 12cm by 8cm by 10cm (to the nearest centimetre). The boxes are packed into crates which measure 1m by 0.75m by 0.8m (to the nearest centimetre).
(a) Basic question – How many boxes fit into the crate?
(b) What is the maximum volume of a toy box?
(c) What is the minimum volume of the crate?
(d) Look at your answers to (b) and (c) – do they affect your answer to (a)?

It was a simple question about fitting toy boxes into a shipping crate. It extended to looking at upper and lower bounds, then recalculating given this extra information. Simple? No chance!

Problem One
Not changing to the same units

Problem Two
Working out the two volumes and dividing to find the number of toys. When challenged on this, it took a while to get through to the basics of how many toys actually fit – mangled toys and split up boxes don’t sell well.

Problem Three
Maximising the arrangement of boxes – remainders mean empty space

Problem Four
Using the information from Problem Three to find the total number of toys

Problem Five
Working out the dimensions and volume of the empty space in the box

Problem Six
Trying to convert centimetres cubed into metres cubed. I don’t even know why they wanted too!

Problem Seven/Eight
What’s an upper/lower bound?

Problem Nine
What do you mean that the original answer changes when the box size alters?

Problem Ten
All those who weren’t paying attention when you went over Problem Two and don’t ‘get’ why the answer isn’t 625!

291. Elves and Trees

elf-clip-art-elf1

Image credit: www.clipartpanda.com

 

Here is a quick festive probability resource for you covering elves, outcomes and tree diagrams. The task starts with logically listing outcomes, before looking at working with tree diagrams in the extension.

Elves outfits tree diagrams (pdf)

290. Alcoholic Percentages

The season of gratuitous excess is upon us and the reminders about safely consuming alcohol are popping up in supermarkets … usually next to the massive bottle of brandy, which are on special offer! We educators are counting the days to the holiday break.

But wait!

Keep your eyes peeled for all the alcohol awareness promotions. My local supermarket had information leaflets and these goodies:

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Forget doing percentages about sale prices. How about working out the volume of alcohol in different beverages? Finding out how easy it could be to exceed the recommended intake? A bit of education of the effects of alcohol in a cross curricular lesson?

Now how much brandy soaked Christmas cake is equivalent to one unit of alcohol?

248. Fair decorations

Here is a quick cake conundrum for you.

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Two girls are decorating the christmas cake. It is a square fruit cake. They share the icing such that one girl ices the top and one face. The other girl ices the remaining three faces. What possible dimensions of the cake will make the icing areas equal?

247. The Elf Challenge

It was the month before Christmas and all through the house not a creature was stirring – except for the senior elves who were on the brink of all out war. Father Christmas had picked up some leadership strategies on his travels and decided to send his management elves on a team building day … paintballing!

Don’t be fooled – this is no simple Christmas time-filler. This task requires problem solving strategies, two-way tables, averages, data analysis and logic. In fact, you might want to have a go yourself. There is a task sheet, support sheet and solution.

The Elf Challenge (pdf)

Enjoy the puzzled faces and watch the arguments when students try to justify their answers.