This month, I had the great opportunity to work with my best friend (since fifth grade), Mrs. LaMecha James, Mathematics Specialist, on a lesson including Wonderopolis and mathematics. It was a truly a lesson for me how seamlessly she thinks of topics, mathematical equations, and solutions. I am always in awe of her math skills. All I had to do was ask for help and she immediately chimed in with her thoughts. I scribbled notes and asked questions to complete my lesson plan. She gave me the lesson as only a math expert could for such the layman that I am in upper mathematics. The lesson plan is called Ordered Pairs and can be found here in the Wonder Ground.
As I pondered a resource that I have for monthly events, I saw for the month of April that the Boston Marathon was listed. I had so many wonders about marathons and I wrote those on a shoe template. See the resource section for the Marathon Wonders that I had and for the template to use with your class. This was fun, but it was learning for me. I learned so much about a marathon and mathematics. Through my research and the reading of Wonder # 197, I was able to get answers to all of my marathon wonders. I also found that Wonders #876 and #1245 are great resources to pair with this lesson. Students need to know how mathematics is used in our daily lives and they need to know healthy habits necessary before taking on any new physical activity.
For teachers who truly want to go the “extra mile” have students drive the route they have planned for the marathon in their city. Students should make sure points match what they have graphed. Another idea is to have students plan and implement a marathon in their city to support a charity. Remember to involve the physical education teacher to help with healthy habits to do before running or exercising, by modeling for the students then having the students follow in gym class. Whatever the class decides to do, I hope it will inspire them to try something new!