Math in High School

To paraphrase Galileo Galilei, math is the language with which our universe is written. In the context of High School content, the language and patterns prescribed by mathematics are visible and explicit in almost every class. Ohio’s adopted math standards require students to: make sense of problems and persevere in solving them; reason abstractly and quantitatively; construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others; model with mathematics; use appropriate tools strategically; attend to precision; look for and make use of structure; and look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.

Although English and Social Studies classes aren’t typically understood as math-heavy, February saw juniors using graphing skills and analysis tools in their Economics class, as they learned about demand and supply curves, and relating the concept of “elasticity” (responsiveness to price) to their own experiences as consumers. In English, juniors and seniors calculated caloric deprivation during Elie Wiesel’s enslavement in Auschwitz.

In TASK and LEAD classes, students applied mathematics to financial literacy concepts, from interest rates on credit cards and loans to insurance costs to comparing contracts for prom caterers.

February’s science classes used math thinking, as Physical Science students worked to develop understanding in the organization of the periodic table of elements; Biology students considered respiration rates of mealworms and graphed O2 and CO2 concentrations.  Advanced Biology students considered the evolutionary timeline represented by the diversity of specimens in the Franklin Park Conservatory, while Environmental Sustainability brushed up on probability as they considered Genetics.

In Engineering classes, students employed spreadsheets to collect data on projectile motion trials, as well as digital and physical dimensioning and measuring tools, to reverse engineer objects using 3D-modeling techniques.

Finally, in Math classes, students looked at statistics, circles and measures of arcs, composite functions, and the laws of sine and cosine as applied to nautical distance and astronomy.

Truly, math was embedded in February!

Author:
Ruth Rubin
Head of High School