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Thursday, November 29, 2012

I take the fifth

I told the kids in one class a fraction-related joke today.

A guy walks into a restaurant and orders a pizza.  The waiter asks if the man would like the pizza cut into 4 pieces or 8 pieces.  The man replies, "Better make it 4.  I could never eat 8 pieces!"

There were a few pained grimaces of non-understanding, and a general lack of comprehension.  When we started talking about it, how the guy would be eating the WHOLE pizza, no matter whether it was cut into 4 pieces or 8, a few kids started to get it.

One kid had his hand raised the whole time, and when I finally called on him, he asked, "How old is that joke?"

I said, "I'm not sure, but pretty old."

He then said, "Oh, no wonder it's not funny."

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Darn right, I'm smart!

Yesterday, in our opening discussion on fractions, I asked the kids to count all of the students in the room.  Lots of sweeping glances and finger pointing around the room as the kids counted.

I then asked them what fraction of kids in the room were boys.  Again, a flurry of exaggerated counting, with mostly right answers shouted out.  Finally, I asked them what fraction of kids in the room were girls.  Same activity of spinning in chairs to count everyone one by one.

When that was done, I told the kids that I knew what the fraction of girls was without even needing to actually COUNT the girls in the room.  The TA in the room with me at the time spoke up with a "Me too!"

I asked the kids to discuss with one another how it was that Mr. Ball and I knew the fraction without needing to count.

Several kids immediately shouted out, "BECAUSE YOU'RE SMART!!!"

Well, sure, but not exactly the answer I was looking for...

Sunday, November 11, 2012

An observation

Magnetic personality

Since this past week was my turn to do morning announcements, and the science word of the week was Magnetism, I sent a girl down yesterday with a great Dave Barry quote -- "Magnetism is one of the six fundamental forces of the Universe, with the other five being gravity, duct tape, whining, remote control, and the force that pulls dogs toward the groins of strangers."

The teachers seemed to enjoy it.  :)