Campers learn how the numbers add up to jobs


July 24, 2002|By Pat Brodowski | Pat Brodowski,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

THESE CAMPERS WON'T be starting careers soon, but they have seen how math skills are used in careers every day.

Guest professionals helped these children explore job connections in math during the two-week enrichment camp for elementary grades at Spring Garden Elementary.

This camp goes beyond workbooks to find math in art projects, cooking, sewing, computers, literature and estimation games.

For many, the highlights were community visitors and a carnival the campers made from math games.

On Tuesday, the children learned how math is a hidden helper. Police officers, a hairstylist, an orthodontist, a karate instructor and a television news anchorwoman showed how they used math for communication, measurement, storytelling and self-defense.

"These are people from the community that children can relate to," said Patty Hultquist, camp director.

She develops activities to increase confidence so campers will appreciate and use math with an I-can attitude, she said.

Each speaker highlighted math concepts in his or her talks.

Adelphia Channel 3 news anchorwoman Nicole Ryan intrigued students with ideas of proportion as viewed through her camera. She also stressed timing skills and interviewed pupils with a stopwatch running.

"How does a news story add up? News is all about time," Ryan said.

"You time yourself at the interview. On average, it takes a half-hour to get the story. At the studio, you bang out a story in about 18 minutes. We fill a 30-minute newscast with stories and commercials, so everything is timed. We actually use a stopwatch when we do the news," she said.

Ryan gave 20-second interviews to campers Hillary White, 10, and Julie Douglas, 11. The pupils were surprised how much they needed to say to fill up 20 seconds.

Orthodontist Kevin Lawyer let children handle false teeth and asked them to decide if any were missing. Campers read metric measurement tools used for teeth and saw how geometric angles between anatomic features are used to determine how to align teeth.

Patti and Brantley Parks, police officers from Baltimore County, displayed communication devices that depend upon numbers and discussed estimating what a crime might cost.

Math camp met karate camp for a physics and geometry demonstration, and a lesson on counting in Korean. About 25 children of the Global Hap-Ki-Do Summer Camp visited with their instructor, Joe Borucki.

Self-defense depends upon principles of math and physics, he said. He showed how the arm is like a lever that will lock at the joint if the arm is pushed back. Breaking wood is the action of a fulcrum and perpendicular force. One technique uses three or four circling arm movements at one time.

"We visit math camp each year," Borucki said. "This shows them that math is everywhere."

Kathy Bumstead, hairstylist, also told how she uses math in her work. Mike Illiano of J&P Pizza discussed using math for recipes and donated pizzas for lunch.

Media center is open

The media center at North Carroll High School is open for pupils from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Monday.

The school's new media specialist, Judy Brubach, initiated opening the center.

"Kids have access to computers, reading for pleasure, or research. It gives them an opportunity to access resources," said Jim Rodriguez, assistant principal. In addition to books, the media center computers offer Internet access. The school media center will be open through the middle of next month. North Carroll High is on Panther Drive, off Route 482.

Information: 410-751-3450.

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

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