Wild About Math! Making Math fun and accessible


Thanksgiving wishes, carnivals, and sneaking in a little Math on turkey day

It's been a month and a half since I started this blog and I'm delighted with the nice reception it's received. Thank you all for the kind comments you've left. I wish each of you a warm, safe and wonderful Thanksgiving. Enjoy good times with your families. Oh, and it's ok if you don't crack the Math books for a few days!

I've been enjoying the Carnival circuit, publishing articles recently in the carnivals of healing, education, and homeschooling. I particularly like the homeschool community as I appreciate the commitment it must take to not only raise children but to educate them yourselves. And, I imagine, that if Math isn't your forte it can be a challenge to provide that part of the education. I'll be doing what I can to continue writing articles and pointing everyone to helpful resources. That's my commitment as expressed in this blog.

In this week's Carnival of Homeschooling there are three Math articles. Yeah, Math!

While you're all making preparations for the big feast Thursday here are some ideas for sneaking Math into your kids.

  1. Bottled juice algebra. If adults each drink 16 ounces of juice, and kids each drink 8 ounces, how many 64 ounce bottles will you need to buy given the number of adults and children you'll have Thanksgiving dinner with? How much juice will be left over from the last bottle?
  2. Time arithmetic. If the turkey takes 57 minutes per pound to defrost how long will yours take to defrost?
  3. Money calculation. If cranberry sauce cost ____ per pound and you buy five pounds, how much did you spend?
  4. Ratios and fractions. If you need to mix ___ cups of water with ___ ounces of mashed potato mix to feed 4 people, how much water and mashed potato mix do you need to feed everyone at your dinner table.
  5. Percent calculation. If everyone uses two forks, one knife, and one spoon, what percent of the utensils are forks? What percent are knives? What percent are spoons?

Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!

Comments (3) Trackbacks (2)
  1. Mashed potato mix?? eww. 😛

    Happy T-day. 🙂

  2. Hi MathMom,

    I never make mashed potatoes. So you can make them with real potatoes? 🙂

  3. Greetings!

    I am told by many that the idea of doing word problems is so boring.
    The idea of a little story with a hints and and a right answer seems like
    fun to me, especially the right answer part! When the right answer is something
    I need to use it is even better!

    My desire to buy in bulk sometimes complicates my life. COSTCO has
    beautiful cranberries and I am compelled to buy the 3 pound bag even though I have a twinge about
    how to scale my recipe… you see I always
    make 2 small bags and the recipe is so easy to make cranberry sauce! One bag, one cup
    sugar, and one cup of water…. 2 bags of cranberries, 2 cups of sugar, 2 cups of water. I think you
    see the pattern now.
    But, lately I have had Sol’s tips and tricks to help me do arithmetic.. Alas, I look over the
    wildaboutmath site and find some good Thanksgiving fun, but not my issue. You may want to calculate what to do if you bought the
    5 pounds of cranberries that Sol has you fixing.

    You have a 3 pound bag (48 ounces) of cranberries and a recipe for cranberry sauce that
    is for a 12 ounce bag. Without a scale, how can you figure out how much of the
    48 ounce bag of cranberries to use ??? By quick observation you know you have
    enough cranberries to make 4 – 12 ounce recipes. But you want to make double the
    12 ounce recipe so you can make 2 – 24 ounce recipes, by using half of the bag each time.

    Messy way is to take all the berries out of the bag and divide in half and use half or 24 ounces.

    But a hint is on the bag … It says there are about 25 – 1/2 cup servings in the bag! Handy because
    I can derive the 24 ounces by dividing by 2. That means I have 12.5 – 1/2 cup servings for 24 ounces and
    that is 6 very full cups of berries.
    I now know that I will boil 2 cups of water with 2 cups of sugar and add 6 cups of cranberries and
    boil about 10 minutes until all have popped and mixture is smooth like jam.

    Since Thanksgiving and Christmas are times you may be travelling by airplane you can
    remember this recipe another way…
    The TSA has the 3-1-1 RULE that allows
    3-1-1 — 3 ounces of liquid in 1 quart bag and 1 bag per person.
    You need 3 cups of cranberries 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water. Double for more fun!

    Hope you are having a lot of fun with Sol’s very cool wildaboutmath blog!!

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