Participating in project work is a nice way to increase the level of interest in a given subject. One gets to study about the subject in a practical manner. Understanding the basic concepts becomes easy with this approach.
There are many ways through which one can apply concepts of mathematics in day-to-day life. The ideas presented here, should allow children to test their mathematical skills in a real world scenario.
Project Ideas for Maths Students
The following project ideas can be used by students from all age groups. Math project ideas for high school and middle school students are presented separately in the following write-up. Problem solving skills can be developed with these math projects.
Geometry Map Project
It is an interesting project to do with different elements such as streets, buildings, etc. being depicted with the help of geometric shapes like lines, angles, circles, squares, rectangles, etc. The project can be made interesting by restricting the use of repetitive shapes, i.e. avoiding 90 degree angles for every square/crossing.
In such cases, one has to make use of acute/obtuse angles. The different elements found in a map can be symbolized by means of circles, arcs and other geometric shapes.
Practical or real things which offer a hands-on experience are a matter of interest in children. A community garden project would require the kids to do some calculations. Measuring the area of a given plot should be the first task.
Next step would be to measure the distance between plant rows. Along with the development of mathematical skills, children can also learn about different tasks of an agriculturist. Students calculate the amount of rainfall, fertilizers being used and finally the crop yield.
Organizing Tax Clinics
Setting up temporary tax clinics in association with CPAs or the local IRS office can be a nice math project. Many of those filing their tax returns may find it difficult to complete the whole procedure. Filling the local, state and federal tax forms educates students about different math procedures involved in the whole process.
Based on these calculations, a distance that is in proportion with the actual one should be used for spacing the models of sun and planets. The same procedure can be used for setting the distance between planets and their moons.
On the basis of these results, combination of numbers that occur most number of times can be calculated.
The activity of drawing circles to create different patterns is quite interesting. Circles with equal radii should be drawn for this activity. First you should draw a circle with a specific radius. The second circle must be drawn in a manner that its radius lies on the rim of first circle.
The points of intersection of these circles should be used as centers for drawing the next two circles. The subsequent circles should also be drawn with their radii at the points of intersection. After drawing few more circles you would find that these circles form a certain pattern of triangles.
It means that even if you haven't intended to draw patterns of triangular shapes, the intersections of circles create them (patterns). This activity/project proves that circle is the basic unit of measurement and also a crucial factor in the organization of space as applied in Islamic architecture.
This is an interesting math game for kids. In the game of integer trains, you have to create a train (series of integers) of specified length say, 10 (unit not needed). Here you have to work out the probabilities and possibilities of different ways to form this length (10). For example, you may form a train with two integers i.e. 9 and 1 (9+1=10).
Another example is that of adding 5, 3 and 2 (5+3+2=10). In this manner, you can go to the extent of working out a formula for calculating the number of ways in which such integer trains can be formed. This is not a math problem however, an exercise which basically helps you play with numbers.
The different math project ideas for kids discussed in the write-up should be useful for making the subject of mathematics interesting. Similar concepts can also be used for science fair projects in schools.