30 May, 2014
Volume 19 No. 22
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In This Issue

STEM Tutorials from a Collaboration of NASA and Khan Academy

Daily Desmos 3.0

Healthy Eating Math Story Contest


Online PD

Orientation Sessions

Problem Based Learning Courses

Graduate Credit:
Mathematics Teaching and Learning Certificate

Master's Degree


STEM Tutorials from a Collaboration of NASA and Khan Academy


At the 6th annual White House Science Fair on Monday, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Khan Academy announced the results of their new collaboration: a series of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) tutorials.

"Measuring the Universe" and "Exploring the Universe" freely offer simulations, challenges, and games that blend NASA's space exploration expertise with Khan Academy's approach to online self-paced learning. See, in particular, the section "Measuring the solar system," which shows how to measure the size of the earth, moon, and sun by applying geometry and trigonometry; the videos and other instructional materials about the Curiosity Mars rover; and, in "Orbital mechanics," the introduction to orbital mechanics and the work of Johannes Kepler:


PoW taking place: math problem-solving moment of the week

"Harrison Z. from Highlands Elementary does a super job of explaining why he did each step. The method he used to tackle the second question was pretty unique, too...."
- Annie, commenting on the FunPoW's Latest Solution

Daily Desmos 3.0


The popular free plotting challenge that asks "Can you create this graph?" has taken a new twist.

First featured in these pages upon its launch last March, the Daily Desmos has done away with its schedule and numbering system. Come contribute images directly, at your convenience; just follow the links in this blog post to first notify co-creator Dan Anderson:


Desmos is a free online graphing calculator that zooms in and out of plots, offers slider bars to explore parameters, and switches between Cartesian and polar coordinates, among many other features. For more about Desmos, including their staff picks of "Creative Art," visit


Now taking place: math education conversation of the day

"As a middle school teacher, I've been intrigued by this thread. I remember a discussion in one of my college math classes. I still have the book. There is also a nice hierarchy diagram. I recreated it for you.... I'm curious about something, though. I started investigating because I was trying to decide if the clarification of the HS standard should impact my discussions with my 7th graders.... I'm sitting here reflecting on the amount of time it took me to research and get comfortable with this one idea. In doing so, I looked at the geometry standards K-12. It was a valuable activity, but most of us don't have time to do this kind of analysis...."
- Virginia, posted to the secondary (grades 9-12) discussion group of the Association of Math Teachers of New York State

Healthy Eating Math Story Contest


A site where students "discover the joy of writing their own math stories" is serving up a healthy eating math story contest for the summer — sweetened with hundreds of dollars in prizes.

Shooloo Learning invites students and teachers in grades 3-12 to submit their own math questions about eating choices, conduct research, gather data, and devise solutions. The site editors also promise to give feedback on, among other criteria,

  • conceptual clarity and precision
  • accuracy of calculations
  • demonstration of a step-by-step solution

Shooloo Learning has already published thousands of original word problems, each with "I Can" statements tagged to associated Common Core State Standards (CCSS):


Create a free login to browse and contribute your own:



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