Teachers feed need to boost math skills


July 28, 1999|By Pat Brodowski | Pat Brodowski,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

DYNAMIC MATH ACTIVITIES prompted 60 North Carroll elementary pupils to investigate mathematical concepts the past two weeks at Carroll County Math Camp.

The fifth annual camp, led by Patti Lambert, was held at Spring Garden Elementary School in Hampstead. The pupils attended camp two hours each day.

"In this fun and inviting atmosphere, math concepts were taught, even though the children might not have realized they were spending each day on a specific math concept, such as addition, subtraction, fractions or geometry," Lambert said.

Teachers from Spring Garden taught the campers, who had been recommended for reinforcement in math by their teachers.

Joanne Geiman taught the youngest pupils, Gretchen Haines taught the middle age group and Joanna Lewis the older pupils.

When searching for a theme for the camp, the teachers decided that teaching kids to cook would boost math skills.

"Cooking is a high motivator," Lambert said. "What better way to get their attention than through their stomachs?"

They connected their idea to literature. Each day, a book was read aloud, connected to a math concept and a kid-food item. For the book "Pigs In a Blanket," campers made hot dogs wrapped in crescent rolls. For the book "Katie No Pockets," campers made pita pocket sandwiches.

Campers went home each day with a recipe and additional math games for family play.

Learning to estimate began each day, with counting by 10s or twos for younger campers and discussing mean, median and mode for older ones. Campers also spent a half-hour in the computer laboratory working with the concept being taught that day.

"Our whole purpose is to show how math can be used every day of their lives, and to help them feel really great about using math," Lambert said.

To show how integral math is to professional life, they invited speakers from the community.

Eric Lewis of Cho, Wilks and Benn Architects displayed rocks and other building materials and took campers for a tour of building a model from a floor plan.

Ralph Morgan and Diane Moran Phillips, owners of Hampstead Country Crown, diagrammed the world beneath a gas station, and showed how they estimate how much gasoline is stored and how to determine its price.

About 10 children were chosen to help Tony Illiano of J&P Pizza. They tried to toss and spin pizza crust like he did. Illiano donated pizzas for the campers that day.

Camper Adam Piet brought Austin, his golden retriever puppy, to camp, on the leash held by his mom, Gail Piet. Austin became a model for veterinarian Donna Todd from Randallstown Animal Hospital.

Other speakers were florist Gail Terzanno of Timeless Creations, paramedic Dan Jones of Rural/Metro Ambulance and Mark Thomas of the Baltimore Blast.

Student volunteers were: Dan Baumiller, Melissa Fannon, Christopher Frey, Hillary and Leah Geiman, Kelly Hoover, Samantha Kelly, Kimberly McNill and Holly Passemore.

Labor Day bike ride

Bicyclists who complete a 100-mile circuit in a day, dubbed a century ride, earn an unspoken badge of honor among cyclists. It's a major milestone.

For 21 years, the Hanover Cyclers bicycle club has offered marked roads and maps for century rides on Labor Day. This year's ride starts at 6: 30 a.m. Sept. 6, rain or shine, from the South Street Recreation Park in McSherrystown, Pa.

If you can't bike 100 miles, or wish to bring experienced children along, 25-, 50- and 62-mile rides are offered. Motorists patrol the routes, and food stops are offered for all but the 25-mile ride.

When riders return to the park pavilion, hot dogs, healthy and homemade snacks, and hand-dipped ice cream are provided. Refreshments are included in the registration fee.

The $10 registration before Aug. 23 includes the opportunity to purchase a commemorative T-shirt for $10.

Fees per rider are $15 after Aug. 23. Tandem team fees are $15 before the deadline and $20 afterward. Children younger than 16 are free. Helmets are required for all riders.

Information: Bob Nordvall, 33 E. Lincoln Ave., Gettysburg, Pa. 17325, or 717-637-1060.

Pat Brodowski's North neighborhood column appears each Wednesday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

Pub Date: 7/28/99

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.