The sixth-grade math curriculum was developed to enable students to apply mathematic reasoning in various contexts. California State Standards for sixth-grade mathematics and the district’s pacing guide were the foundations of this yearlong math project.
The students build never-before-seen 3-D creatures—heroes (positive) and villains (negative)—to place on a number line. The positive and negative creatures let the students evaluate addition and subtraction problems on both a kinesthetic and visual level.
Students’ Criteria for Assessment
familiar 2-D something copied creatures with loud voices creatures that take too much time to make |
never-before-seen 3-D new kind of hero or villain names for these creatures each creature must have at least one special ability bigger than 6 inches square smaller than 8-1/2 x11-inch sheet of paper |
When the students designed a never-before-seen flying object, they learned to figure out what path the object would take as it flew. That meant learning the difference between the angle of depression and angle of elevation.
Math concepts involved in this challenge included properties of integers and real numbers; graphing linear equations; verifying that a point lies on a line; deriving linear equations; the Pythagorean Theorem; and trigonometric functions for solving physical problems, such as the motion of an object under the force of gravity.
Students’ Criteria for Assessment
contact with the ground size larger than 10 inches expensive object store-bought object battery-operated object |
ability to move every part must have a purpose two or more materials all parts must be attached and secured must remain airborne for more than two seconds |