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A Middle School Math/History Quest

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Title: A Middle School Math/History Quest


1
A Middle School Math/History Quest
  • By Dea Jones
  • Summit Parkway Middle School
  • Columbia, SC
  • dejones_at_richland2.org

2
Why?
  • Encourage active engagement
  • Promote collaboration
  • Promote school as community
  • Encourage research and extension
  • Encourage thinking outside the box

3
  • Common Core State Standards Standards for
    Mathematical Practice
  • Students should
  • Make sense of problems and persevere in solving
    them.
  • Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
  • Use appropriate tools strategically

4
  • A Mathematical Quest
  •  
  • Should you choose to take this challenge,
  • Youll work hard, to be sure.
  • There are riddles, codes, and puzzles
  • Youll have to endure.
  •  
  • A puzzle leads to a clue master,
  • Who will guide you with a clue.
  • All the clues point to a mathematician,
  • And you must tell me who.

5
Continued
  • Complete the clue sheet.
  • Find the importance of each.
  • Then make a presentation,
  • In order to teach.
  •  
  • So...prepare to be challenged
  • Sharpen your mind like a sword!
  • For those who complete this treasure hunt...
  •  
  • There waits a BIG reward!

6
continued
  • One little hint.its a secret,
  • Shhhhhhhh...dont tell!
  • This little web site
  • Might help you as well
  •  
  • http//www.nsa.gov/kids/
  •  

7
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10
A clue
  • Clue 1
  • Here is all you need to do.
  • First, solve the sudoku.
  • If this puzzle you dare enter
  • Look at the panel bottom center
  • Read diagonal increasing left to right
  • Three little numbers are in your sight
  • Its not as hard as it might appear
  • The numbers form an important year

11
1 7 6 3
8 6 7
4 1 5 7 2
6 5 4 3 2
7 3 6 4
8 6 1 5 9
8 2 9 4
8 5 2
3 6 9 7
12
Another
  • Clue 2
  • Heres the next clue.
  • It totally rocks!
  • To figure out this one,
  • Explore CAESARS BOX.
  • S D L Y X A T A I I A E U T B N N G D T R A D Y I
    H A L R P E E R E I T

13
And another
  • Clue 4
  • Three important PEOPLE
  • Lie in wait for you to find
  • Get your brain juices flowing,
  • put code-breaking on your mind.
  • Listen carefully lest you be cursed!
  • Let the 19TH letter be the first!
  • 13 26 9 2 23 1 2 16 13 22 13 1
  • 24 16 17 12 17 9 1
  • 11 23 22 23 22

14
Just one more
  • Clue 7
  • How many grains of sand
  • Would fill in the universe?
  • This question might be a challenge.
  • Or maybe its really a curse!
  • To find the next clue, beware!
  • The word is carefully hid.
  • Youll need to explore and practice a little
  • With a cipher called POLYBIUS GRID.
  • 44 11 34 14 43 15 13 31 35 34 15 43

15
How?
  • Choose a mathematician/scientist- someone who
    interests you.
  • Research and choose 8 facts (dates, places,
    people, interesting tidbits)
  • Create clues using puzzles and codes.
  • 4. Distribute puzzles to school personnel and
    give them passwords.
  • 5. Introduce the project. Have students
    research and figure out all the clues and their
    significance.
  • 6. Set due date (allow for collaboration and
    research, presentation design, etc.)

16
1. Choose a Person
17
Albert Einstein
18
Emmy Noether
19
Srinivasa Ramanijan
20
This year Neil deGrasse Tyson!
21
2. Research 8 Facts
  • Dates
  • Accomplishments
  • People
  • Places
  • Important tidbits

22
3. Create clues using puzzles and codes
23
Dates
Are you ready to quit? Dont stop now, you can
do it! Heres the next clue. Step up and go to
it! Mayan numbers are cool, Youll soon
discover, If this important DATE You hope to
uncover!
Youre almost there, Dont give up, keep on
trying! Else others will reap While you sit
crying! Heres the last clue, An important YEAR
you must find To figure this one out Let ROMAN
NUMERALS fill your mind! Why is this year
important? One more challenge to beat Just like
the adversity she faced To live her life complete!
MCMXIX
24
Youve met every challenge Thrown at you so
far Do you think you can finish? Are your skills
up to par? This brain tickler is wicked, And
vicious, its true. Study EGYPTIAN NUMBERS to
discover this clue. An IMPORTANT DATE Is what you
seek. So be bold! Be brave! No time to be meek!
Oh Smart one, so eager For your quest to
start, Youve crossed the first obstacle, So perk
up and take heart! The first clues a
challenge. An important DATE awaits you Explore
BINARY NUMBERS To uncover this clue.
1100 / 10110 / 11101011111
25
7 1 3 8
4 7 9 2
5 8 7 1 3 6
2 3 7
1 6 8
6 7 5 8 1
3 8 1 5 6 9
2 4 7 5
5 3 2 1
Here is all you need to do. First, solve the
sudoku. Then, if this puzzle you dare enter Look
at the panel in the center. Dont count the
number in the center exact Proceed with caution
and carefully act. Look center top, center
bottom, Center right, and center left, my
dear This is how youll find a very important
year
Try it!
26
People, Places, Things
The first clue made your brain hurt But your
troubles have just started. Just stay fully
focused And dont get down-hearted! To a very
important PLACE This next clue will
lead. CAESARS CIPHER you must practice And
youll be smart indeed. Its not that hard, But
for a key you will thirst This might be helpful
Make the 14th letter first! 18 5 2 17 18,
7 14 26 22 25 1 14 17 8
27
To find this place, look across the sea to the
boot. The island it kicks is a start An ancient
Greek city thrived here long ago With a powerful
HIERO at its heart. Your clue is the name of this
ancient city so fair Find postal code 96100 if
you dare!
28
Intrepid cryptographer, Here is your clue. Its a
place where a person Gives education its due. Ivy
is its league Its halls are for learning, Over
many a year, It calls out with yearning. Theres
royalty in its name Its motto you can bet In an
ancient language written Dei sub numine viget
Descartes had it right When he spotted that
fly! We needed a system To help us to
spy. Where is this place on earth?, You may ask
with dismay. Use these numbers to Help you find
your way 46 57 N 7 27 E
29
So youve not given up? You continue your
quest. Heres a new type of code Give it a shot,
do your best! The mystery person had a
NICKNAME Its your job to uncover it. Use ONE
PIGS PEN If you dare to discover it.
30
Ah, youve come back for more, How quaint! If
youre wanting an easy one This aint! Heres a
code breakers nightmare For you. Its a
challenge even for a genius To do! Find an
important PLACE Study WINDING WAYS Important keys
you need to survive Are DIAGONAL and SIX BY
FIVE. Heres another hint,( if you must peek) It
is one of the seven sisters that you seek! B Y A
O E N R M C G E L N R E P Y N W L N S A A L I N V
A X
31
Youve come so far, 2 challenges youve won. This
test is even tougher You may wish youd never
begun! Find a PERSON, a PLACE, and a THING Using
a code youve never seen Study all you can about
POLYBIUS GRIDS Find the cluesand what they mean!
  • 23 23 11 43 14 55
  • 11 33 12 43 24 14 22 15
  • 45 11 54 24 13 11 12

Try it!
32
Accomplishments
You are pretty good At this code breaking
stuff. But dont get too cocky Up to now, its
all been fluff. A serious cryptographer Can do
this, of course! To find the GREATEST
ACCOMPLISHMENT Spend time learning
Morse! -../..//-.-./---/-/./.-././-..//.-//..-./
---/.-./--/ ..-/.-../.-//..-./---/.-.//..-./../-./
-../../-./--.// -/././/./-..-/.-/-.-./-//-./..-/-
-/-/./.-.//---/..-.// .--./.-/.-./-/../-/../---/-
.///..-./---/.-.//.-/-./-.--// .--./---//../-/..
/-/.//../-./-/./--././.-.//
33
This next clues a tough one But you can solve it
if you try Learn about her CONTRIBUTION, (What
she did and why). Oh, code-breaking maniac, So
nervous and so tense, Youll need to
explore Ciphers called RAIL FENCE! A S R C
A G B A B T A T L E R
34
Are you ready for a clue? This ones a real
teaser! To unlock the puzzle, Study BOXES by
CAESAR! HAINIEISNCMLSWFEMKIELDAADRUBNNEEEYUT
Try it!
35
Throw in Something Obscure!
36
Have you given up yet? Hold on! One more
clue! Lets give this mathematicians Inspiration
its due. To solve this puzzle Find your way
through the maze. Dont let the dead endings
Leave you in a daze! Pick up the letters As you
enter the right sections The word they spell
Will guide your DIRECTION
Start
Finish
37
  • Taxicab
  • Pluto

38
Distribute the clues to the cluemasters
39
Cluemasters
2 The leader of the 8th Is who you should
find The password is Pythagoras Hes got the
clue, so be kind!
4 Hes the BIG KAHUNA, The one in charge The
password is Euler For a clue that is large!
6 She works in Math AND science Making rockets
and a tv show The password is Newton For a clue
you should know.
40
Introduce the Quest
41
Final Instructions
  • For the mathematical quest
  • Make a presentation!
  • Its easy to do.
  • Include pictures,
  • Info from the clues,
  • And a famous quote, too!
  • Tell about this persons mathematical
    contribution
  • Why is his/her work an institution?
  • Congratulations! Youve accomplished a great
    deal!
  • Me personally, Im exhausted,
  • If you had to rhyme like this,
  • How would you feel?

42
  • But seriously, though,
  • Always remember this, do.
  • Math can be a challenge,
  • For me and for you
  • Make it a fun thing,
  • dont let it scare.
  • Because you cant escape it
  • Math is EVERYWHERE!!!
  • Are you impressed with my rhyming?
  • I rhyme with great clout!
  • All I have to say is
  • Dr. Seuss, eat your heart out!

43
Accommodations/Differentiation
  • Students could work alone or with a partner
  • Students without computer access were given time
    in class to search online at school
  • Students had two complete class periods to work
    on the computer presentation with their partner.
  • Students used fair trade opportunity
  • Creativity encouraged in presentations

44
Implications
  • Interesting observations
  • Students were eager to work together!
  • Students were in need of validation
  • Students were captivated by the clues and the
    puzzles
  • Positive Outcomes
  • Powerful class discussions about jobs that use
    code breaking and computers, ancient historical
    places and people, and even tombstones!
  • Excellent collaborative work
  • Great school community build up
  • Students attained a deeper understanding of a
    famous mathematician as a person, warts and all
  • Students were able to take dry math facts and put
    a human face to them.

45
Conclusions
  • Over 90 of the students liked this project best
    of all.
  • Learning the history behind the math helped the
    students understand that math is a human
    endeavor. It is a quest for the truth and a need
    to make sense of our natural world. It is done by
    people just like them who find our world a
    fascinating place with many unexplored and
    undiscovered possibilities.

46
Would you like the answers?...
  • Clue 1
  • 287 b.c.
  • The year of Archimedess birth

47
  • Clue 2
  • Studied at the library in Alexandria Egypt
  • Archimedes studied here with followers of Euclid

48
Clue 4
  • Eratosthenes- a close friend and the librarian at
    Alexandria
  • Phidias-an astronomer who was the father of
    Archimedes
  • Conon (of Samos) - a Greek mathematician and
    astronomer who was also a close friend of
    Archimedes

49
Clue 7
  • Sandreckoner
  • The title of a book written by Archimedes that
    tries to mathematically calculate the number of
    grains of sand it would take to fill the
    universe. In it he creates a system of large
    numbers

50
Questions? Comments?
51
Try it out! Email me!!!
Dea Jones Summit Parkway Middle
School dejones_at_richland2.org
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