SISL > 2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop > Activities

# Sustainability in Math Activities

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Teaching Mathematics as Though Our Survival Mattered part of Activities
Martin Walker
Mathematics plays a pivotal role in helping us understand "the current human condition." This attached article provides multiple examples and is useful as a supplemental reading. A variety of math problems could also be extracted for course use.

Energy Cost of Engine Idling part of Activities
Ben Fusaro, Florida State University
This is an open-ended but elementary modeling exercise about idling energy behaviors and impacts.

What's for Dinner? Analyzing Historical Data about the American Diet part of Activities
Jessica Libertini, Johns Hopkins University
In this activity, students research the historical food consumption data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to observe trends, develop regressions, predict future behavior, and discuss broader impacts.

How much energy do you save by doubling insulation? part of Activities
Joseph Skufca, Clarkson University
Students will be provided the governing equation for steady state heat transfer across a surface. They will use that equation to explore the effect of changing the insulation value on the amount of energy used.

Simple Population Space Usage part of Activities
Bill Bauldry, Appalachian State University
Students find current values for world and US populations, the area of Texas, and the size of the average house in the USA. Students then look at ratios to assess land usage.

Water conservation part of Activities
Holly Partridge
Small amounts of water in one home dripping from a faucet can add up to huge monetary and resource losses

Problems for Calculus and Precalculus part of Activities
Deb Hughes Hallett, The University of Arizona
Problems on Energy and Climate for Students in Calculus I and II

Solar panel statistical tests part of Activities
Owen Byer, Eastern Mennonite University
In this activity, students will determine whether there is a statistically significant difference in the number of watts of power produced on individual solar panels at Bryn Mawr College.

Arctic Sea Ice Extent part of Activities
Bill Bauldry, Appalachian State University
Student teams investigate Arctic Sea Ice by analyzing actual data and making predictions. A worthwhile extension is to predict the first year that the Arctic Ocean will be ice free.

How Big is Your Breakfast Footprint? part of Activities
Ben Galluzzo, Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania
Calculation of a carbon footprint resulting from common breakfast choices illustrates the importance of contextualization.

Modeling: (1) Revenue Neutral Carbon Taxes; (2) Accelerated atmospheric C02 concentrations part of Activities
Martin Walter, University of Colorado at Boulder
Design a revenue neutral carbon tax and a plan for implementation; together with a model for what happens if we do not institute such a tax-system.

Charlie Buehrle, Harrisburg Area Community College-Harrisburg
This activity has students investigate their own cost, CO2 output, and time for commuting. They then compare their commute to an environmentally conscious alternative by using comparable metrics.

Should I Unplug? part of Activities
Lori Carmack
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The True Cost of Eggs: Commercial vs. Local part of Activities
Caira Bongers

How should I shower? part of Activities
Margaret Sullivan
In this activity, students will investigate the questions: What are the benefits/costs of 3 varieties of shower head types: standard, low flow, massage spray? Which would be best for a homeowner? For the university dorms?

One day it is too hot and other days it is too cold. Do we need to replace the HVAC system? part of Activities
Monika Kiss
This project will allow students to create a mathematical model to help in making decision about replacing HVAC units on a large scale.