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Newsletter: Math Forum Internet News, No. 6
Posted:
Nov 10, 1996 4:06 AM


11 November 1996 Vol.1, No.6
Fractals Lesson  Math Line Puzzles  Why Learn Math?
THE MATH FORUM INTERNET NEWS
http://forum.swarthmore.edu/
FEATURED INTERNET RESOURCE: FORUM NOVEMBER HOT SPOT
http://forum.swarthmore.edu/~steve/steve/current.html
FRACTALS LESSON by CYNTHIA LANIUS
http://cml.rice.edu:80/~lanius/frac/
This lesson plan is designed for elementary and middle school students. Written to comply with suggestions in the NCTM Standards, it uses fractal geometry to introduce students to modern mathematics and to connect arithmetic and geometry. The lesson also connects math with art, writing, history, and career information.
Students learn how to make a fractal by constructing two famous examples: the Sierpinski Triangle and the Koch Snowflake. Math questions and challenges follow activities; "What's so hot about fractals?" explores why fractals are fun and useful to study. Finally, links to other fractals on the Web and where to learn more about them are included.
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From the Forum collection of K12 Math Tips and Tricks:
LINE PUZZLES
http://forum.swarthmore.edu/k12/k12puzzles/
Can you connect the dots in a 3x3 grid using 4 straight lines? Can you plant 7 rosebushes so that they form 6 straight lines with 3 bushes in each line? How about 10 bushes in 5 lines of 4 each, or 19 bushes in 9 lines of 5 each?
If you find these puzzles easy, try constructing nine triangles by drawing three straight lines through a capital M.
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SEND YOUR MATH LINE PUZZLE **WITH YOUR ANSWER** to webmaster@forum.swarthmore.edu
We'll add your best puzzles and your names to our Web pages.
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FROM THE EMAILBAG  WHY LEARN MATH?
Why do high school students need to learn math? I mean, we don't use math all that much in English, so why learn it when we already know how to balance checkbooks?
Good question  but you might be surprised at how many people need math in their lives. Math is useful for a lot more than balancing your checkbook!
There are thousands of different jobs that require some aspect of mathematics. Here's a page with some firsthand accounts of what college math majors are doing, from Air Traffic Control Systems Analyst and Lawyer to Data Capture Facility Troubleshooter on the Hubble space telescope.
http://forum.swarthmore.edu/social/moms.html
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Three Math and Education students at the University of Richmond (Jen Peck, Karen Rosser, and Carol Pifer) have put together a clever series of Web pages called "What Good is Math?"
So You're Planning a Trip? Art and Math: How Could They Be Related? Will I Ever Be Able to Fill My Piggy Bank? How Did I Get a C in Spanish? So You're Planning a Party?
http://www.urich.edu/~ed344/math/mathhome.html
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There are other interesting questions like yours to be asked. Why should the public support mathematics? What do mathematicians do that is important?
The Math Forum has collected some answers, and we'd like to hear from you. See our Web page, "Key Questions for Mathematics":
http://forum.swarthmore.edu/social/key.questions.html
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STUDENT SHOWCASE
Our call for student projects yielded a gallery of student work from Dave Bradley's 9th grade geometry class at Thomas Jefferson Junior High School in Salt Lake City, Utah:
http://forum.swarthmore.edu/students/showcase/jeff.jrhigh/
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The Math Forum ** 11 November 1996
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