Resources and Tools for Elementary Math Specialists and Teachers
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Balloon Booths

This Technology Problem of the Week (tPoW) challenges students to pop a balloon by exercising their command of fractions and estimation visually. The Java simulation shows a two-dimensional balloon and presents its original diameter; prompts you for a scaling fraction; and calculates the scaled diameter. The goal: to scale the balloon up (inflate) or down (deflate) so that it fits through a gap while still remaining wide enough to pop on two nails set just slightly narrower apart than the width of the gap. Scale up too much, and the balloon will fail to pass through the gap all together; scale down too much, and although the balloon will pass through the gap, it will fail to pop on the nails. Solve and explain your solution; download hints and answer checks. Also available in Spanish. Free registration is required.
Contributed by: The Math Forum - Author, Educational Software Components of Tomorrow - Author
Math TopicNumber Sense, Fractions, Mathematical Practices, Mathematical Processes
Grade Level5, 6+
Resource TypeExperiment/Lab Activity, Game, Interactive Media

  • Additional Information
    • AudienceLearner
    • LanguageEnglish (USA)
    • Education Topic
    • Interdisciplinary Connection
    • Professional DevelopmentNo
    • ContributorThe Math Forum - Author, Educational Software Components of Tomorrow - Author
    • Publication Date1999
    • RightsCopyright (c) 1994-2011 Drexel University.
    • AccessFree access with registration
  • Standards
    • Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

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