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May 2003, Volume 8, Issue 9


Lisa's Lemonade Stand: Exploring Algebraic Ideas
Esther M. H. Billings and Tracy Lakatos
Article describes an activity, "Lisa's Lemonade Stand", that engages students in algebraic thinking as they analyze the relationships between variables and gain experience describing and representing these relationships graphically. Includes activity questions and sample student work.

Using Literature to Teach Factorials
William P. Blintz and Sara Delano Moore
Article describes a lesson using literature to make factorials both interesting and comprehensible to middle school students.

Sweet-Tooth Geometry
Regina M. Scanlon
Article describes a project in which students design and construct a three-dimensional "candy box" that would appeal to children. Students make the box out of prisms, pyramids, or cylinders, and must determine the surface area and volume of the solids and write a persuasive business letter. Materials list and directions included.

A Modeling Approach for Enhancing Problem Solving in the Middle Grades
Beverly J. Ferrucci, Ban-Har Yeap, and Jack A. Carter
Article illustrates a modeling approach used by Singapore educators to teach mathematical skills and concepts in a problem-solving environment.

Using Number Relationships for Estimation and Mental Computation
Ramakrishnan Menon
Article describes how students can compute and estimate mentally, and rapidly, by using appropriate number relationships.

A Design for Ratio and Proportion Instruction
Dor Abrahamson and Christian Cigan
Article describes an innovative method for teaching fifth-grade students how to solve ratio and proportion word problems with understanding. The method uses the multiplication table as a conceptual support.