Real World Math Discussions
Photo from Physics Central: Physics Buzz blog.
A colleague of mine, Leigh Ann Austen had sent on an article titled: If you could fold a piece of paper 42 times, it would reach the moon and suggested I bring it up to my math class. What a great way to get students thinking at the start of a lesson involving exponential growth since each fold would provide double the thickness.
As OMG-Facts.com cites:
… One page is about 0.01 centimeters high … The moon’s average distance from earth is 384,000 kilometers away …
With this in mind, your students could begin the inquiry process by taking what they know and attempting to find some sort of pattern like:
|# of Folds||Thickness (cm)|
Some guiding questions:
Is this claim factual? Can we find an easier way than using a table to test the validity?
I’m sure students would engage in a pretty interesting discussion and would be willing to provide some insight into their thinking…
To see the original article, click here.