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Welcome to my math blog! The purpose of this blog is to help you stay informed about our learning and experiences that have taken place during our math class. I have also included links your child (and you) may want to use in order to supplement math learning in 5th grade.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Great Conversation Heart Caper (Day 2)

We continued working with the data we collected last week using our Valentine candy hearts.  By the end of class on Friday, we had determined that there should be about 29 candies in every box.  Today, I wanted us to make a reasonable prediction of the number of each color of candy in a box.  To do that we began by putting all of the 5th grade data on a spreadsheet:

Using our totals for each color, we found the fraction, decimal, and percentage of each color found in our 57 boxes of candy.

We compared the 5th grade percentages to the percentages we found using only our classroom data.  We found that the percentages were really very close.  However, this information is based on each box having 100 candies in it.  We want to know how many of each color there might be in a box with only 29 candies.

So, we wanted to come up with an actual numerical prediction of each color in a box, so we looked at our mean (average) number of each color of candy in a box.  To do this, we took the total number of each color of candy from the three classes and divided by the number of boxes we opened.  For example, 416 purple candies divided by 57 = about 7 purple candies per box.

We placed our predictions in a table and I opened a new box in front of the class.  We compared our predictions to the actual number in the new box.  Here are our results:




Finally, the kids wrote to me explaining how the predictions compared to the actual count.  We did discuss that there is an element of machine error with the number of each color placed in a box (there isn't someone counting each color out) and we discussed that the reason that there should be an approximate total number of candies is that each box is packaged by WEIGHT.  Therefore there might be a small variance in total, but not by many (some candies are more dense than others).  

Tomorrow, we will combine the data from the three new boxes and see if the predictions are any closer.

HOMEWORK:  Countdown 4.4

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