Ohio Resource Center

 Measurement Benchmark E, Grades 5-7, Mini-Collection The grades 5-7 Measurement Benchmark E: Use problem solving techniques and technology as needed to solve problems involving length, weight, perimeter, area, volume, time and temperature is one of the benchmarks most frequently tested on the 7th grade Ohio Achievement Assessment (OAA). The lesson materials and assessment items in this mini-collection support instruction related to this benchmark. (jk)

 Scuba Diving in Belize (ORC#: 10354) In this 5-lesson unit, students take a pretend scuba-diving trip to Belize. They explore various real-world applications of time and distance measurement, make estimations and calculations, and use online resources to plan the trip. In the first lesson, students view several websites and determine what mathematical ideas and concepts are involved in scuba diving. In the second lesson, students use various resources to choose travel dates, compare temperatures, estimate and calculate distances to Belize City, and determine the length of their flight. The third lesson focuses on time zones and the effects of traveling across time zones. In the fourth lesson, students pretend to travel to the island of Ambergris Caye off the coast of Belize; they complete the measurements needed for their scuba diving gear and solve elapsed time problems. In the final lesson, students complete linear conversions, find elapsed time, calculate a percentage, and analyze data from a chart. ORC reviewers especially liked this lesson as a context for integrating mathematics, science, reading, and social studies. Videos, Internet resources, activity sheets, questions for students, suggestions for assessment, lesson extensions, and prompts for teacher reflection are included. (author/sw)

 Collecting The Rays (ORC#: 3325) In this lesson, students explore how variations in the shape, color, and other characteristics of solar collectors affect the energy absorbed. Students make rectangular prisms that have the same volume but different linear dimensions. After measuring the volume of several boxes with unit cubes, they develop the formula for the volume of a rectangular prism. They consider several other factors besides shape in experimenting to see what kind of solar collector is most efficient. This lesson is a nice integration of mathematics and science. (author/sw)

 Earth, Moon, and Mars Balloons (ORC#: 4648) Making a scale model of the solar system is not a novel idea, but this site restricts its consideration to the Earth, Moon, and Mars and explains in more detail than most. Using balloons for the planetary bodies makes the actual construction simple. A student activity sheet and several links to Internet resources are included. (sw)

 Reaching New Heights (ORC#: 252) Exploring the relationship between two variables prepares the student for the study of functions, which in turn provides the basis for much of the study of algebra. Students work in pairs to measure their arm span and height and record them on a class chart. The class works together to create a scattergram to display the data. Class discussion focuses on interpreting the scattergram, followed by using graphing calculators to plot the scattergram. Finally, students examine the graph of y = x and its relationship to the scattergram. In addition to the lesson plan, the site includes ideas for teacher discussion, extensions of the lesson, additional resources, a discussion of mathematical content, related research findings, and technology connections. The lesson plan is accompanied by video clips illustrating lesson procedures. The user should first locate the Reaching New Heights lesson and then access the appropriate video clips at the PBS TeacherSource website. The video player necessary to view the video clips can be downloaded for free from the site. (author/sw)

 Inclined Plane (ORC#: 1164) In this multiple-day activity, students measure the time it takes balls made of different materials to roll down inclines of varying lengths and heights, then make inferences about the relationship among the variables involved. Teachers are encouraged to act as facilitators while students decide which variables are important and can be measured, how best to collect the data, and how to interpret the results. Student input is elicited at all stages of the activity. Diagrams of the experimental apparatus, sample data tables, and suggestions for questions to guide students' thinking are included. Internet extensions are also provided. This lesson plan is adapted from an article that appeared in the November-December 1995 issue of Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School. (author/sw)