Monday, August 11, 2008

Math Monday: China and the 2008 Olympics

So this week's unit is in honor of the Olympics and will be focused on China, specifically Beijing and the 2008 Olympic games. For math this week, we will be doing the following:

Basic arithmetic, Counting, and Graphing
Olympic medal tracking: Click here for events and results
Choose an event and then click on the results
-how many medals did each country earn? (the younger ones can practice counting and those who are adding can add up the total number of gold, silver, and bronze medals a certain country has won)
-Make a bar graph of medals won

Distance Measuring, Timing, Number Places, Ordinal Numbers
Hold your own Olympics
Long jump = measuring
100 yard dash = timing and measuring
Use a stopwatch for the race and/or measure the distance jumped and then take their time/distance and use it to show number places.
Can also teach younger ones about ordinal numbers

Measuring, Fractions
Cook a traditional Chinese dish (this also ties in with social studies). Here are some recipes I have found:
Chinese Sponge Cake
Won Ton Soup
Fried Rice

Math tools
Abacuses are still used today for arithmetic in China. Practice using an abacus for adding and subtracting, but also for teaching number places.

Chinese currency is called Renminbi and is made up of dollars called yuan or kuai. Pronunciations can be heard and pictures of the currency can be seen here

-Print out clock template here
Attach hands with a paper fastener
-Have the children move the hands to set the time of various Olympic events. You can search the Olympic schedule here
Click the event(s) of your choice and then you will see the times of the matches.

Word problems
(with the exception of the first word problem, the others contain actual trivia/facts about China and Chinese culture):

Sun Li loves egg rolls. Her grandmother made one dozen egg rolls for lunch. Sun Li ate 3 by herself. How many egg rolls are left?

Chinese New Year is celebrated for 2 weeks plus 1 day. How many days are spent celebrating Chinese New Year, each year?

The Beijing Subway has 4 lines above ground and 5 lines underground. How many lines are there in all?

It costs 1000 yuan for the best tickets to the final Men’s basketball game and medal ceremony. The best tickets to the final Men’s volleyball game and medal ceremony cost 600 yuan. How many more yuan does it cost to see the basketball game?

One American dollar is equal to about 7 yuan. If I have 10 American dollars, about how many yuan would that be?

Can you think of any other ways to incorporate China and/or the Olympics into elementary math?

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