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February 2007, Volume 12, Issue 6

 FEATURES Using Prediction to Promote Mathematical ReasoningOk-Kyeong Kim, Lisa KasmerHow using students' predictions purposely in the classroom will promote mathematical reasoning and encourage discussion about mathematical concepts. Examples are provided where prediction can be used in algebra and probability. Classroom management strategies are provided to make using prediction most effective. Cell Phone Coverage Area: Helping Students Achieve in MathematicsRose Zbiek, Shari Reed, Tracy BooneCell phone coverage areas arouse students' curiosity in a lesson that engages students with area as a measure that relates to, but is different from, linear measure. Three activities (stations) are described in detail along with suggestions on introducing the lesson and closing the lesson with a rich whole class discussion. Activities include using a "tower tool" to simulate placing a cell phone tower on a county map for optimal coverage. Using Sorting Networks for Skill Building and ReasoningRobert Andre, Lynda WiestAn activity created to practice a variety of math skills within a sorting network activity. Students are given cards with numeric values and instructed to physically walk through the network. If they complete the task correctly, the network sorts them based on the value of the card. Samples and activity extensions are discussed. Instructional Games with CalculatorsWallace JuddThis reprinted article from the November 1976 issue of Arithmetic Teacher describes a series of calculator games that can be adapted to all levels. Games can be played quickly for skill practice or looked at more in depth for conceptual development and strategy. Alternative Uses for Junk Mail: How Environmental Print Supports Mathematical LiteracyKaren Koellner, Faith WallaceWays to use advertisements and solicitations to create real world math problems at various levels. Three levels of problem types are provided with examples of each. Using this environmental print requires students to read carefully and make real-life choices that require complex mathematical thought. Magic with Mayan MathShannon Overbay, Mary BrodFour activities that use the Mayan system of numeration in base 20. Students first learn the notation, then add, then complete magic squares in the Mayan system. These activities provide students an opportunity to rethink how we use place value and the importance of zero in our number system. Activities can be used with a wide range of abilities and age levels simultaneously since the ideas are new to most people.

 Departments Readers WriteReaders Write - February 2007 Quick ReadsShort Takes: Another Good Idea: Computing Quartiles: It's All in the Cards! Solve it!Solve It! Multiples of Four Menu of ProblemsMenu of Problems - February 2007 Cartoon CornerCartoon Corner: Buy the Gallon or Buy the Pound? A Taxing Day! Mathematical Roots/Math RootsMath Roots: A Dozen Ways to Celebrate Mathematician of the Month Families AskFamilies Ask: Showing Your Work: Beyond Following Steps The Thinking of StudentsThe Thinking of Students: Changing Sizes Window on ResourcesWindow on Resources - February 2007