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Quantitative Skills, Thinking, and Reasoning Activities


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Metric System Conversions: Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) activity
Jeffrey Pribyl
This activity helps student learn to convert within the metric system and begin learning about process skill necessary for working in groups.

Independent Samples t-Test: Chips Ahoy® vs. Supermarket Brand
Dexter Whittinghill, Rowan University
In this hands-on activity, students count the number of chips in cookies in order to carry out an independent samples t-test to compare Chips Ahoy® cookies and a supermarket brand. It can involve discussion of randomness and independence of samples, comparing two parameters with null and alternative hypotheses, and the practical issues of counting chips in a cookie.

Reasoning About Center and Spread: How do Students Spend Their Time?
Shirley Alt
This activity helps students develop better understanding and stronger reasoning skills about distributions in terms of center and spread. Key words: center, spread, distribution

Using Your Hair to Understand Descriptive Statistics
Christopher Malone, Winona State University
The purpose of this activity is to enhance students’ understanding of various descriptive measures in statistics. In particular, students will gain a visual understanding of means, medians, quartiles, and boxplots without doing any computations by completing this activity.

Seeing and Describing the Predictable Pattern: The Central Limit Theorem
Shirley Alt
This activity helps students develop a better understanding and stronger reasoning skills about the Central Limit Theorem and normal distributions. Key words: Sample, Normal Distribution, Model, Distribution, Variability, Central Limit Theorem (CLT)

Calculating the radius of the Earth
Basil Tikoff, UW Madison
Science students often have difficulty thinking about large spatial scales. The purpose of the exercise is to redo Eratosthenes' calculation of the radius of the Earth using data from to sites in ancient Egypt. The excercise teaches about the methodology of science - how Eratothenes figured it out - rather than worried about what the "right" answer is. It can also be used to discuss the role of models in geological thinking.

Economics of installing Solar PV panels: is it worth it to the individual?
Martin Walter
We show that it is economical for an individual to install solar photovoltaic panels in Denver, Colorado; and this is a sustainable strategy for society at large.

Take a Deep Breath on the Appalachian Trail in Great Smoky Mountains National Park: How Many Ozone Molecules Do You Inhale?
Module by: Len Vacher, University of South Florida Cover Page by: Len Vacher and Amie Fishinger, University of South Florida
Spreadsheets Across the Curriculum module/Geology of National Parks course. Students work with ratio and proportion and the concept of mole to calculate the number of molecules of ozone in a volume of air from concentration data.

Simple vs. Compound Interest -- Spreadsheeting the Difference
Gary Franchy, Southwestern Michigan College
Spreadsheets Across Curriculum module. Students build spreadsheets to tabulate, graph and compare the future value of investments with compound vs. simple interest. Spreadsheet level: beginner.

Salmon Use of Geomorphically Restored Streams at Point Reyes National Seashore
Module by: Mark Rains, University of South Florida Cover Page by: Len Vacher and Denise Davis, University of South Florida
Spreadsheets Across the Curriculum module/Geology of National Parks course. Students work with salmon-trace streambed data to study whether removal of a spawning run barrier was effective

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