Tag Archives: numeracy

The Weekly Text, 10 September 2021: A Lesson Plan on Lesson Plan on the Number of Characters Used in Writing Systems from The Order of Things

This week’s Text is a lesson plan on the number of characters used in writing systems. Like all of the lessons and other materials under the heading of The Order of Things, this lesson and its list as reading and comprehension questions are adapted from Barbara Ann Kipfer’s magisterial reference book of the same name.

Nota bene, please, that I adapted these materials to assist students who struggle to work with two symbolic systems–i.e., in this case, numbers and letters–at the same time. Needless to say, these documents can be adapted for your use; they are, like almost everything else here, in Microsoft Word. In other words, they are open source.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

The Weekly Text, 20 August 2021: A Lesson Plan on Nations with the Shortest Coastlines from The Order of Things

This week’s Text is a lesson plan on nations with the shortest coastlines. Here is the list as reading with comprehension questions. As the title of this post indicates, this is another lesson adapted from Barbara Ann Kipfer’s magisterial (I really want her job) reference book The Order of Things (New York: Random House, 1997).

Nota bene, please, that I wrote these materials (there are quite a few of them on this blog now, with more to come) with the needs of students who struggle with reading in mind, especially when two symbolic systems (letters and numbers) are at work in the same lesson. If you find this lesson useful in your classroom, you might find its companion, a lesson on nations with the longest coastlines, which I published last month, a complement to the documents in this post.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Word Root Exercise: Du, Duo

Here is a worksheet on the Latin roots du and duo. They mean two. These are very productive roots in English (indeed, duo stands on its own, meaning “pair” and “duet”), providing the basis of high-frequency words like dual, duplex, and duplicate–and less high-frequency words like duodenum and duodecimal, which do turn up on things like the SAT.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Stephen Leacock on Statistics

“In ancient times they had not statistics so they had to fall back on lies.”

Stephen Leacock

Excerpted from: Winokur, Jon, ed. The Big Curmudgeon. New York: Black Dog & Leventhal, 2007.

The Weekly Text, June 11, 2021: A Lesson Plan on Geometric Angle by Degrees from The Order of Things

This week’s Text is a lesson plan on the degrees of angles in geometry. Here is the worksheet with a short reading and a series of comprehension questions.

The reading covers the five types of angles in geometry: acute (1-89 degrees); right (90 degrees); obtuse (91-179 degrees); straight (180 degrees); and reflex (180-359 degrees). This is an exercise designed to supply diverse learners with practice manipulating two symbolic systems–i.e. words and numbers–at the same time. It also, I would think (but also qualify this with something that is beyond dispute–I am not a teacher of mathematics), introduces students to the concept of angles in geometry.

For more on the material I developed from Barbara Anne Kipfer’s superb reference book The Order of Things, see the About Posts & Texts page visible on the masthead of the home page of this blog.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

108 Stupas on the Wall

Genghis Khan’s city of Karakoram, the tented capital of Asia, was encircled by a wall that was decorated with 108 stupa-shrines. This remains a highly propitious and symbolic number in Central Asia, India, and the Far East. In India it is the emergency phone number, while in Japan the temples ring out the old year with a toll of 108 bell strikes, one for each of the 108 lies, 108 temptations or 108 sins resisted. The number can be satisfactorily resolved into three groups of thirty-six, a third dealing with the past, a third with the present, and a third with the future.

Rosaries and belts with 108 beads are also most commonly worn and counted by Hindu, Zen, and Buddhist monks and priests. For, linked with the list of 108 earthly moral temptations, each and every Hindu deity has 108 distinct names, titles, and epithets (they seem to derive from the 54 letters of the Sanskrit alphabet which, when recited in both their masculine and feminine forms, produces 108).

But the most beloved piece of symbolism behind the attraction of 108 seems to be in the order and shape of the numbers themselves. In Eastern philosophy, the 1 stands for the essential unity of creation; 0 for the nothingness of our future existence; and the 8 means everything; so, together, the create a chant of ‘one-emptiness-infinite.’”

Excerpted from: Rogerson, Barnaby. Rogerson’s Book of Numbers: The Culture of Numbers–from 1,001 Nights to the Seven Wonders of the World. New York: Picador, 2013.

The Weekly Text, April 16, 2021: A Lesson Plan on the Largest Seas from The Order of Things

Here is a lesson plan on the largest seas along with its accompanying combined reading and comprehension worksheet.

Like the other lessons under the rubric of The Order of Things by Barbara Ann Kipfer, this is a short lesson with plenty of room (and formatted in Microsoft Word for just that purpose) for expansion and adaptation. There’s an excursus on this material, arranged as a unit of 50 lessons (for now–it will inevitably expand when at last I return to classroom teaching) on the “About Posts & Texts” page on this site. I conceived and engineered these materials to use with students with relatively low levels of literacy and/or numeracy; it gives such students some structured materials to practice operating with two symbolic systems at the same time, namely words and numbers.

Anyway, over time, I’d like to continue building this unit, and then develop from it scaffolded, topic-specific subunits that respond to student interest, work to build literacy and numeracy, and help students feel confident in their ability to deal with what might once have seemed like insurmountably complicated material to them. What do you think?

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

The Weekly Text, February 12, 2020, Black History Month 2021 Week II: A Reading and Comprehension Worksheet on Hank Aaron

This week’s Text, in this blog’s ongoing observation of Black History Month 2021,  is a reading on Hank Aaron and its accompanying vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet.

This is one of the very first of these document sets I prepared, and it includes a short numeracy exercise on Mr. Aaron’s statistics. As you surely know, we lost Mr. Aaron on January 22 of this year, just a couple of weeks shy of his eighty-seventy birthday. I don’t know about you, but I can’t remember a time in my life when Hank Aaron wasn’t someone I thought about on a regular basis.

If you or your students are interested in Mr. Aaron, stay tuned; I plan to exhaust my storehouse of material on him before Black History Month 2021 is over.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

A Lesson Plan on Cooking Conversions from The Order of Things

This week’s Text is a lesson plan on cooking conversions from The Order of Things. This worksheet with a list as a reading and several comprehension questions (with room to add several more in this Microsoft Word-formatted open source, easily manipulable document) is the principal reading and writing work of the lesson.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

The Weekly Text, December 11, 2020: A Lesson Plan on Container Sizes from The Order of Things

This week’s Text is a lesson plan on container sizes from The Order of ThingsThis is a straightforward literacy and numeracy exercise designed to build procedural ability and confidence. You’ll need this list-as-reading and comprehension worksheet for the primary work of this lesson.

Supporting materials for this lesson may be found on the About Posts & Texts page.  

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.