All posts by lspady

Nebraska Robotics Expo 2020

CEENBoT Robotics Showcase 2020 logo

Nebraska Robotics Expo

Mark your calendars for the following Saturdays at Westside Middle School from 2:00-4:00 pm.

  • January 11, 18, 25
  • February 01, 08, 15
During these Saturday sessions, your child can learn about the Robotics Expo and the various competitions:

Click here to find out more!

#73 Codes

01000011 01101111 01100100 01100101 01110011 00100000 01100001 01110010 01100101 00100000 01000011 01101111 01101111 01101100 00100001

in English, Codes are Cool!

Do you have your own secret code that you use with your friends?  Do you like writing notes to people?  Do you like to write in a diary?  Do you like solving puzzles and finding patterns?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, you might want to check out this Math Minute!

  1. Go to https://www.rapidtables.com/convert/number/ascii-to-binary.html and type in a sentence in English.  Then tap the convert button to translate your message to binary.
  2. Learn about the Pigpen cipher (also known as masonic cipher, Freemason’s cipher, Napoleon cipher, and tic-tac-toe cipher) by watching this video: https://youtu.be/s5XRTcLYy40 Then, write a message using what you learned.
  3. Watch this video about the Enigma Machine at Numberphile: https://youtu.be/G2_Q9FoD-oQ Post a comment about something new you learned.
  4. Learn about the Caesar Cipher by watching this video: https://youtu.be/o6TPx1Co_wg Then create a message for someone else to figure out.  Be sure to include the shift number!
  5. Find out how a code was used to catch someone red-handed! https://www.pcmag.com/news/369045/genius-we-caught-google-red-handed-stealing-lyrics-data

Battle of the Books 2020

Registration has begun for the Battle of the Books 2020!

Online registration runs through Friday, October 25.
Battle of the Books celebrates reading and fosters team spirit, and is open to all Westside District 4th through 6th graders.  We are hoping to have all 10 elementary schools represented at this year’s battle on Saturday, March 21, 2020 at the Westside Middle School.
For more details, please visit: https://sites.google.com/view/westsidebotb

#72: Palindromes

Guess what!  The 2019-2020 school year contains 21 VERY SPECIAL days!  Ten of those dates are listed in the picture above.  Can you figure out the additional 11 days that will occur in 2020?

How can you spend your Math Minutes?

Make a Water Glass Xylophone

Musical glasses are a fun way to combine art, math, music and science.

Gather the materials you need:

8 identical water glasses

water

a set of measuring cups

food coloring (optional)

1 plastic spoon

1 sheet of paper

Tape

pen/pencil

As you create this experiment. Take pictures of all of your steps.

Steps:

  1. Use a measuring cup to fill each of the glasses with the correct amount of water. Use the image below as a guide.
  2. For fun, you can add a drop of food coloring to your glasses or two drops to make green, orange, or purple.

3.  Label your glasses.  Use the image below as a guide.

4. With a plastic spoon, gently tap each glass and listen for the sound it makes.

5. Notice which glass makes a lower sound and a higher sound.

6. Try playing these simple songs or create your own.

7. What else can you do with musical water glasses? Respond to this post with your ideas.

 

The SCIENCE behind the music

The science of sound is all about vibrations. When you hit the bottle with the spoon, the glass vibrates, and it’s these vibrations that ultimately make the sound. You discovered that tapping an empty bottle produced a higher-pitched sound than tapping a bottle full of water did. Adding water to the bottle dampens the vibrations created by striking the glass with a spoon. The less water in the bottle, the faster the glass vibrates and the higher the pitch. The more water you add to the bottle, the slower the glass vibrates, creating a lower pitch.

 

 

Activity adapted from Musical Water Glasses at https://www.connectionsacademy.com/resources/instructographics/music-water-glasses and https://www.stevespanglerscience.com/lab/experiments/pop-bottle-sounds/

 

 

#71: 2020 Olympic Medals

80,000 tons of mobile phones and small electronic devices around Japan, which will be used in the crafting of every gold, silver and bronze Olympic and Paralympic medal awarded to athletes at the 2020 Olympic Games.
How can you spend your Math Minutes?

Image Source: https://www.pdclipart.org/

Tech Checkout Library

Tech Resources

Below is a link to a list of technology housed at the EY office.  Make sure to select Tech at the bottom of the spreadsheet.

The spreadsheet contains the title of the tech available for checkout.  If/when you decide you would like to check out something, please e-mail Jenny Henningsen, who will then put your name in the “checked-out by” section of the spreadsheet.

Click here for a list of the tech available for checkout

 

#70 Algebra in Pictures

Images to create this puzzle taken from pdclipart.org

One of the things I struggled with when taking Algebra was the use of letters (variables) to represent numbers.  However, if we remove the letters and replace them with pictures, somehow Algebra becomes a little more manageable.

How can I spend my Math Minutes?

  1. Figure out the picture puzzle above stating what the ? represents in the final “equation”.  On a piece of paper, put your answer along with your first and last name, grade, school, and classroom teacher.  Give it to your EY Coordinator (or tell your classroom teacher to “pony” it to EY at Sunset Hills).
  2. Create your own picture puzzle.  I used Keynote, but you could use Explain Everything, Pic Collage, or another iPad app.  Pictures for your puzzle can be found at https://www.pdclipart.org/ These puzzles can be emailed to Dr. Spady (ask your EY Coordinator or classroom teacher for the correct email).
  3. Figure out the 11 puzzles pictured below.  On a piece of paper, put your answers along with your first and last name, grade, school, and classroom teacher.  Give it to your EY Coordinator (or tell your classroom teacher to “pony” it to EY at Sunset Hills).

Thank you Mrs. Bridwell for the inspiration to create this post!  Thank you to Mrs. Bridwell’s 6th graders for all the great puzzles below!

#69: Snowiest February

Who knew SNOWIEST was even a word?!

Was February 2019 the SNOWIEST of all time?

How can I spend my Math Minutes?
  1. Create 1, 2, or 3 different graphs to display the data above.  For a clearer image of the data, click here.   Use the Create-A-Graph website to make a graph of the data.  Be sure to include a title and label your axes.
    • Top 5 Snowiest Februarys
    • The Top 5 Snowiest Winter Seasons (Dec-Jan-Feb)
    • Top 5 Snowiest Winters (Jul 1- Jun 20).
  2. Take a look at the graphs in the image below.  For a clearer image of the graphs, click here.  The information in the blue box is particularly helpful in reading the graphs.  Answer any of the following questions by leaving a comment and/or leave a question for someone else to answer.
    • How many times in January/February 2019 did the temperature range fall mainly in the record highs?  What about the record lows?
    • On how many dates was the temperature range very small (short blue bar)?
    • How many times did the temperature range fall in the average section (green)?
    • What do you find interesting about these graphs?