Friday, January 07, 2011

Math Connections to Other Subjects

I have always been fascinated by the many connections between math and other subjects. Many school districts require that teachers use interdisciplinary projects. This was the case at schools where I taught math. A crowded curriculum can make it difficult to engage in such projects. But students do love when math is extended beyond the four walls of their math classroom! Here are some of my ideas that you may find useful.

Math and Science

  1. Explore many scientific facts, such as the boiling and freezing point of liquids, the melting and freezing points of solids, and the temperature of planets, with my WebQuest on Integers and Science.
  2. Explore how scientific notation is used to express a planet's distance from the sun and the size of bacteria with my WebQuest on Exponents and Scientific Notation.
  3. Have you been to the playground lately? You'll find many connections between algebra, science, and the real world in our article entitled Why Learn Algebra?
  4. My Unit on Data and Graphs includes some nice connections to geology, such as this problem from a worksheet.

Math and Social Studies

  1. There are many nice connections between Integers and Social Studies in my Unit on Integers, which covers integer properties and operations.
  2. After teaching a unit on how to read, interpret, and draw graphs, you can have your students draw graphs to compare the Population, Per Capita Income, and Population Density of various countries.

Math and Writing

On standardized tests, students are given open-ended problems and asked to provide written explanations. This is done to assess their ability to express mathematical ideas in written form. To help students prepare for these types of questions, have them answer several open-ended questions using full sentences. Some sample questions are provided in our Classroom Activities and Project Ideas for Number Theory and for Understanding Percent.

Math and Technology

There are two main approaches to to addressing technology in the math classroom. You can integrate math and technology, making these topics the object of instruction. For example, Math and the History of Computers and Math and Round-Off Error are described at this page. You can also use technology to facilitate math learning. For example, the use of an iPod, an interactive whiteboard, or other devices. Find more ideas here.

Math and Sports

Explore Win-Loss Percentage, Graphing Data for Olympics and Super Bowls, Batting Average and ERA, and the NBA Draft Lottery with my Webquests on Math and Sports. You can also play my Integer Football Game.