Here’s the perfect constraint for March! Writing with the digits of Pi.
Differentiation TechniqueGet Ridiculous
Read The OverviewGet Ridiculous!
One technique for finding complexity in a topic is to look for the edge cases, the outliers, the really big or small versions.
Specific Examples of “Get Ridiculous”
So, just how much pasta could I cook in an Olympic-sized pool?
Here’s an interesting way to move students past mundane patterns in their writing. Ask for a rewrite, but without a letter (or two).
If your students can find the area of a square then, armed with Google Earth, they can also figure out how many students you could pack into your school’s playground.
Here’s how you can add some spice to an otherwise dull study of parts of speech.
Go across disciplines by asking students to write a story about fraction equivalence.
So once your students can calculate volume… what do you have them do next? In this math project, kids will look up historic laptops, calculate their volumes, and note how technology has changed over time.
Sure gasoline seems expensive. Until you try to fill your car up with other liquids!
Sometimes we can learn a lot by doing something the wrong way. Here are six ways your students can purposefully design awful, misleading graphs.
How do we differentiate a dull lesson like “its” vs “it’s”? I decided to push it to an extreme (and include some unexpected novelty).
How a small change, with very little effort on the teacher’s part, leads to a delightfully complex task that can suitably challenge students of all ability levels.
Is it possible to save money by commuting to San Francisco from Las Vegas?
We’re going to take the Academic Valentine idea from earlier, and extend it into a full blown love letter – just in time for Valentine’s Day!
Students learn about prime numbers early in their careers, but the true, quirky nature of these numbers isn’t really explored unless kids go on to become math majors. Here are three fun prime explorations suitable for even young students.
Palindromes are one of those fun ideas that some gifted kids just latch onto. We’ll check out palindromic words, phrases, and even numbers in this article.
Many students blow past grade-level spelling and vocabulary at a young age. Unfortunately, a common technique to “challenge” them is to find harder and more obscure words for their spelling list. Instead, let’s take advantage of the built-in complexity of common words with multiple-meanings.
This type of sentence has great possibilities for classroom application because of its two different interpretations. It’s a perfect tool to: demonstrate careful reading, showcase the need for editing while writing, and encourage creativity and divergent thinking.
How long will it take to get a million dollars if you start with a penny and double it?
Garden Path Sentences seem to begin one way, but quickly fall apart, forcing the reader to start over and interpret words in a new way. A simple example is: “The old man the boat.”
Sometimes students need a little structure to force them into a more creative state of mind. Here are a few ideas for interesting writing prompts
Our look at math conjectures continues with Goldbach’s Conjecture, which states that all even integers greater than 2 can be written as the sum of two primes. Is this true for all cases? Another authentic, unsolved question.
Want to have some February fun? Let’s merge the idea of “going together like milk and cookies” with curriculum to create Academic Valentine’s Day cards!
Let’s develop a math project to challenge students who have demonstrated a mastery of multiplication and are ready to explore its applications. We’ll count the parking spaces in the Disneyland parking structure!
What if characters from film or literature dress up like other characters based on some parallel such as: conflict, trait, accomplishment, etc.
It’s essential to teach our students to think flexibly and consider multiple points of view. Flexible thinking leads to product innovation, diplomacy between nations, and advances in science. School, however, often encourages students to settle into a “one right answer” mindset.