Candle Burn #WCYDWT

The structure of this post comes from Dan Meyer’s Three Acts of A Mathematical Story. Act 1 Play the teaser video. Have students write down questions they have about the video. Ask them to be silent during this part so that other student’s questions don’t affect their own. By this point, I’m sure that 95% […]

Car Talk Puzzler (Palindrome Mileage)

New Math Puzzler up this week: Tommy’s Drive to Work RAY: Tommy has a new car, it’s 19 years old. … It has one of those newfangled six-digit odometers. It can register as many as 999,999 miles.  So one fine morning last week, Tommy gets into his new car to drive to work. He fires up his […]

Circle of Differences Puzzle

Great article from the NY Times on the Danger of Praise, with an excellent puzzle included: Circle of Differences The numbers 1, 2, 3 and 4 are written at the corners of a large square.  At each step, at the midpoint of each side, write the positive (or absolute value of the) difference between the […]

Car Talk Puzzler: Math + English =

Car Talk has a new math puzzler up that mixes math and science: There Was an Old Man…RAY: I’m going to recite an equation and, from that, you are going to give me a limerick that consists of five lines. TOM: Does this limerick include Nantucket or the band at the Waldorf Astoria? RAY: No! Here it is. […]

Tech Trick: Quickly posting homework answers online

Here is a quick tech trick for quickly posting your homework key (or any document that doesn’t need to be editable). Because of my new homework policy, I’ve been posting my homework key on the classroom website on the day that I give the assignment out. This allows the students to check their answers (and […]

Link: Learning through Problem Solving

Great post from John Scammell walking through a how-to for “wcydwt” (what can you do with this) or “ltps” (learning through problem solving). Can we just call it great teaching? Learning Through Problem Solving Process 1. Present the problem. The problem is best presented using a multimedia artifact like an article, video, picture, story, song or any […]


From the brilliant(?) minds at, I present to you, the IcoSoKu: Just thousands, that’s it? In my list of mathematical strengths probability does not appear, but there are: 12 unique numbers (vertices of an icosahedron), so 12! = 479,001,600 ways to arrange them. But because of the symmetry involved in a icosahedron, there are 12 ways to […]

Link: SBG… Why?

Great post from Terie Engelbrecht: 1) I do it so students can focus on learning, not points or effort. 2) I do it for students who take longer to make their own meaning; those same students that often get plowed under in the points-chasing game school often is. 3) I do it for students who may be considered […]