NIE—May 3-9, 2017—Math

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This Week’s Anton Lesson Plan

Even though the baseline that newspapers work from include writing and research, not unlike any other career path, mathematics certainly has its place. Math plays a crucial part whether it has to do with a story focusing on the elements behind an upcoming vote for a school budget, figuring out the batting average for a major league baseball player or calculating the grosses of weekend movie ticket sales.

On a practical level, writers are constantly working with word counts and scaling photos down to an allotted space while art directors find themselves having to balance ratios between ads and editorial content.

The following are exercises students can do to get a taste of the role mathematics plays in your newspaper.

• Weather highs and lows. Examine the weather forecast for your area. Create a graph for several weeks showing the high temperature predicted for each day.

• Use won/loss records for local sports teams to create a graph.

• Select three display ads or pictures from the newspaper. What is the perimeter and area of each?

• Using a ruler, figure out the percentage of space on a given page for ads, pictures, stories and headlines.

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