Make a list of all the sports covered in today’s Sports section. Next, note how many articles are devoted to each sport. Add up the total number of stories in the section. Then, divide the number of stories about each specific sport by this total. Multiply by 100 to find the percentage of coverage for each sport.
USA TODAY is full of different shapes — circles, squares, rectangles and triangles — in all different sizes. Use a highlighter or felt pen to outline various shapes found in USA TODAY. Then, identify the correct name of the shape by writing a C, S, R or T inside the shape.
The “tens” place of a number is second from the right and has a value of 10. For example, in the number 21, 2 is in the tens place. The 2 stands for two 10s, or 20. Use a highlighter to mark the tens place of numbers you see in USA TODAY, and write the value of that number on a piece of paper.
The “hundreds” place of a number is third from the right and has a value of 100. For example, in the number 321, 3 is the hundreds place. The 3 stands for 3 100s, or 300. Use a highlighter to mark the hundreds place of numbers you see in USA TODAY, and write the value of each number on a piece of paper.
Define the concepts of addition and subtraction. Then, find an article in today’s paper that contains numbers. Create a five to 10 question addition/subtraction quiz using those figures. Include both numeric and written numbers in the quiz. Trade quizzes with another student and solve.
Fractions are numbers that represent ratios of the number one, e.g., 1/2, 2/3 or 3/4. Fractions are also referred to as mixed numbers. Locate fractions in USA TODAY, and diagram each one using a line or circle graph.
Decimals are numbers that include a decimal point. Numbers to the right of the decimal have a value of less than one; numbers to the left of the decimal have a value equal to or greater than one. Read through USA TODAY and look for numbers that are written as decimals, e.g., .5, and convert them to fractions, e.g., 1/2.
Look through USA TODAY and find pictures of triangles, circles, squares and rectangles. Cut out at least five shapes, and glue each picture to a piece of paper. Then, with a marker, divide each shape into one of these fractions: 1/3, 2/5, 5/6, 5/8 and 1/2. Color and label each fraction.
Identify the difference between odd and even numbers. Odd numbers have 1, 3, 5, 7 or 9 in the ones place, while even numbers have 0, 2, 4, 6 or 8 in the ones place. Choose an article in today’s paper and highlight as many odd numbers as you can find. Tally the results, and then do the same for even numbers.
Number 10 sheets of paper from 1 to 10, placing only one numeral on each sheet of paper. Then, look through USA TODAY and find a picture showing only one thing, e.g., one apple. Cut it out and paste it onto your sheet of paper labeled “1.” Find pictures for numbers 2 through 10.
Benford’s Law states that in any set of random numbers, the number one is most likely to appear as the first non-zero digit. Test this law by counting the times each number (1-9) appears as the first digit in the “e-Business 25” list in today’s Money section.
A nonstandard unit of measurement is useful when you don’t have a ruler handy. Nonstandard units can be things like paper clips, feet, post-it notes, etc. Measure the length and width of the pictures on the front page of the paper using a nonstandard unit. Then, select other items to measure. Vary the unit you use.
You can calculate an object’s perimeter — the distance around it — by adding up the length of each of its sides. Use a ruler to measure the perimeter of the largest picture on the front page of today’s paper. What is the perimeter in inches? In centimeters? Then, find the perimeter of five other features in today’s paper.
The practice of rounding numbers refers to expressing a number in simpler terms. For example, 74 rounded to the nearest ten is 70; 57 rounded to the nearest ten is 60; 35 to the nearest ten is 40, etc. Find numbers in USA TODAY and round each one to the nearest ten.
Look through the Money section of today’s paper, and find as many different math symbols as you can (e.g., +, -, %, $, etc.). Then, create and solve two problems using each symbol. If necessary, refer to a math book or dictionary for assistance.
The commutative property of addition states that the order of the numbers you are adding does not change the sum. For example: 35 + 43 + 21 = 21 + 35 + 43. Find a story in the paper that includes numbers. Then, write a word problem about the commutative property based on the story and its numbers.
Cut out the Snapshots on the front page of each section of USA TODAY and paste them onto a piece of paper. Then, underneath each, list three conclusions that you can draw based on the data in the graphic. Finally, write your own question on any topic, poll 10 classmates, and create a Snapshot based on the results.
Locate several sets of numbers in today’s paper. Then, find the mean or average of each set. Add up all the numbers in the set. Then, divide the sum by the number of numbers in the set. For example: 12+50+46+22+10=140. 140 divided by 5 = 28. Thus, 28 is the mean.
Find two 2-digit numbers in the paper. Subtract the smaller from the larger. What is the difference? Find two 2-digit numbers with a difference between 30 and 50. Find two 3-digit numbers with a difference that is less than 75. Find two 4-digit numbers with a difference between 800 and 1500.
USA TODAY Snapshots are an exciting way to bring current statistics into the classroom. Study the Snapshots on the lower left corner of each section of today’s paper. Create a math problem or social studies question based on the information in one of the Snapshots. Trade with a partner and solve.
One skill all students must learn is the ability to count and exchange money. Peruse today’s Money section, and circle 10 different dollar amounts. Jot them down on a piece of paper. Next to each one, write the number out as a word. For example, $2.31 = two dollars and thirty-one cents. Finally, practice adding and subtracting different amounts. .
Peruse today’s paper and cut out each of the following types of graphics: line graph, bar graph, pie or circle graph, pictograph. What information is found in each? Which is easiest to understand? Which is the most difficult? Finally, create your own graphic based on information in today’s paper.
Find an advertisement in today’s paper that lists a price for its product. Imagine that you need to purchase 45 of these items. What would your total cost be? Search for other ads that contain numerical information and create similar math problems. Trade with a partner and attempt to solve!
Turn to today’s Weather page. Next, find the range of high/low temperatures in the U.S. Then, describe what the weather will be like today in your state. Finally, make a chart that shows the weather information for at least 10 cities found on the map.
Newspapers are full of symbols — objects or signs that represent something else. For example: $ means dollar(s); % means percent; & means and, etc. Find 15 symbols in today’s paper. Next to each symbol, write the word or phrase that it represents.
A scale drawing is a smaller (or larger) but proportionally accurate depiction of an object. Explain why scale drawings are practical and which professionals rely on them. Then, create a scale drawing of the front page of the paper, using one of the following scales: 1” = 1 cm; 1” = .5 cm; or 1” = 3 cm.
Read four short articles — one from each section of the paper — in which numbers play an important role. Then, in a paragraph, explain how people use numbers and math concepts in their daily lives. As a class, discuss how a poor grasp of math can negatively affect a person.
Turn to a page in today’s Money or Sports section. Circle any number on the page that is divisible by 3. Underline any number that is divisible by 6, and place a check over numbers divisible by 9. Finally, use a magic marker to highlight numbers that are divisible by 3, 6 and 9. What do the highlighted numbers have in common?
Measure the length of a photo, text box or graph in today’s paper. Find the length in inches and then in centimeters. Next, develop a formula for converting inches to centimeters. Finally, measure the length of another item in the paper in inches, and use your formula to convert it to centimeters.
A pair is a set of two matching items. For example, a pair of shoes, a pair of mittens, a pair of aces, etc. Look for pairs in USA TODAY — they can be matching numbers, matching names or matching items. Cut out the pictures or words and paste them on a sheet of paper.
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