By Laura Robeldo
Looking for new ways to spark students’ interest in math? Explore Math at the Core: Middle School, a growing collection of interactive math resources in PBS LearningMedia. Aligned with CCSS in mathematics for grades 5-8, these engaging media resources explain a wide range of mathematical concepts, from fractions to geometry, in real world situations. These multi-media teaching tools allow students with different learning styles to expand their knowledge of math. Media resources in this collection range from an animation explaining the concept of additive inverse to an infographic exploring obesity rates in the U.S. Make math come alive in the classroom with these innovative media resources and accompanying classroom activities.
Here is a small sampling of Math at the Core: Middle School, a PBS LearningMedia collection that will include over 420 resources.
Additive Inverse | Video
This animated video from the Utah Education Network explains the term additive inverse and provides several examples that demonstrate the concept. In the accompanying classroom activity, students create equations and solve problems that involve adding groups of negative and positive integers that sum to zero. To get the most out of this activity, students should be familiar with plotting positive and negative integers on a number line.
Exploring Changing Obesity Rates Through Ratios and Graphs | Interactive
In these KQED Lowdown infographics, explore how U.S. adult obesity rates, as measured by body mass index (BMI), have dramatically changed in the past half-century. A circular graph and a pictograph depict data by decade, indicating which parts of the population were not overweight, overweight, obese, and extremely obese according to BMI. In the accompanying classroom activity, students develop an understanding of the ratios and proportional relationships by examining numerical data found in the graphs and creating their own bar graphs.
Slope and House Construction | Video
In this video from Annenberg Learner’s Learning Math, carpenter Norm Abram of This Old House illustrates the concept of slope and relationships in house construction. The accompanying classroom activity helps students develop meaning for slope by building a slide, discussing slope in daily life, and understanding slope as a ratio of height/length. Students also learn about a career that uses the principles of slope and, as an extension, gather data that might be of use in a future lesson on slope as proportion
Finding Patterns to Make Predictions | Interactive
In this interactive from Annenberg Learner’s Learning Math, students learn to see the mathematical patterns that are all around us, even in staircases. In the accompanying classroom activity, students learn to use multiple representations to explore, understand, and predict geometric patterns. First, they will look at a simple geometric pattern and consider how it can be represented in a table. Then, they will put their analytical skills to the test as they predict the 7th, 10th, and nth terms of a pattern. In exploring this problem, students will consider multiple representations and try to identify the mathematical rule that underlies the visual pattern.
Find the entire collection at PBS LearningMedia.