Mathematics is everywherein the home, in the garden, in stores, in cars and planes. . . . That makes it easy both to encourage kids to discover the mathematics in everyday life and to provide fun challenges during the summer. Here are some ideas you can pass on to families, emphasizing how important it is for students to keep their thinking and math skills honed so they don't lose ground over the summer.
Since summer can be a great time to work on teen's money management skills, discuss with teens the idea of saving for emergencies, for long-term goals during high school, or even for college. Perhaps the teens could pick a goal for savings and open a savings account.
Taking a trip? Get out the maps and have the kids calculate distances and figure mileage and gas costs and develop a budget.
Can't go on a trip, but want to practice planning and money management? See Road Trip to Savings
for a four-week, virtual road trip to learn about the challenges of traveling and financial stability.
Start playing a simple Sudoku puzzle
in the newspaper, or find an online Sudoku puzzle with interactive features such as a How am I doing?
button. Solving a Sudoku puzzle does not require using mathematics in the sense of calculating with numbers because the numbers 19 used in Sudoku puzzles are only placeholders. But Sudoku will challenge players to reason and think logically, which are important tools in mathematics. For fun, consider how a Sudoku puzzle would look, if, instead of the numerals 19, the first nine letters of the alphabet, A
, are used as placeholders! The puzzle would look different, but the logic and reasoning involved would be the same.
Speaking of logic, ORC's Stella's Stunners
website offers a fun set of interesting mathematics problems that will challenge thinking for kids in grade 6 and up. See Introductory Stella Problems
for a great place to begin! Go to Who Is Stella?
for background information about Stella and the problems.
See Tutorials for High School Mathematics
for a handy review of twenty-six topics basic to student success in post-secondary science, computer science, and engineering courses. The online tutorial lessons are designed to help students review high school mathematics topics. Each tutorial lesson features a short teacher video reviewing the key mathematical procedures and ideas and demonstrating their application. Students are encouraged to work along as they watch the video. Several videos require the use of a graphing calculator. After viewing the video, students should take the Self-Check
to evaluate their understanding of the topic.
Review or learn trigonometry with Dave's Short Trig Course (ORC #9812)
, a user-friendly, illustrated introduction to trigonometry with helpful applets. Topics include background information, trig functions and their inverses, trig identities, applications, and the law of sines and the law of cosines.
Everything you ever want to know related to being ready to study calculus can be found at Pre-Calculus (ORC #1122)
. There are tutorials, applets, computer programs, and LiveMath notebooks and animations on precalculus topics including polynomial, rational, exponential, trigonometric, and logarithmic functions along with piecewise definitions, parametric equations, and polar coordinates.
For teens who are independent mathematics learners, you'll find incredible applets at GeoGebra Applets
for dynamic exploration of mathematics. They can also go to the GeoGebra
home page to learn about creating mathematical images and interactive web pages.
Finally, learn a little about how engineering has changed the world. Go to A Sightseer's Guide to Engineering
. Plan a family trip to an engineering marvel in your state, or include a site when traveling far from home.