Math at the Mall (Grades 58)
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Malls
and shopping areas are places where students can engage
in a wide variety of mathematics. The following are
activities that students can consider when they are
at the mall. Since all of our malls are different, answers
will vary from location to location.
What makes up a mall?
Malls
have lots of different types of shops, so you can approach
this question in a number of ways.
1.
Obtain or create a list of all the different shops in
the mall. (You may want to choose a mediumsized mall
or shopping area. That gives you the range and sizes
of shops. If it is a very large mall you may want to
divide the mall up into regions and give groups of students
a region.)
2.
Organize the various shops and businesses into different
categories that are appropriate for your mall. Some
possible categories include: department stores, clothing
stores, shoe stores, record stores, software stores,
book stores, food shops, toy stores, sporting goods
stores, etc. You may need to make up categories to describe
your mall. Work to make categories broad enough so that
they generally contain more than one store or business.
Also, try to account for everything that is at the mall.
(The people who manage your mall may be able to supply
you with a list of the shops alphabetically or by location.
This way your students can role play being the owners
of the mall and making the decisions about the categories
and where each shop fits.)
3.
From the total number of shops and businesses in the
mall, calculate the percentage of total businesses in
each category.
4.
Create a bar chart or circle graph that represents the
number and percentage of businesses in each category.
5.
Analyze your data and graphs, and write a statement
that describes the number of shops and businesses in
the mall. Can you use this information to make any conjectures
about the people that use the mall?
Another
way to look at what makes up the mall is to consider
the area that each of the different categories account
for in the mall.
6.
Many malls have maps that offer a scale drawing of the
mall. Take some measurements and calculate what scale
was used to make the drawing.
7.
Using the list of shops and categories developed in
Question 2 and your scale drawing, calculate the amount
and percentage of mall floor space accounted for by
each category.
8.
What percentage of the mall floor space is not accounted
for by the shops and businesses? What is this space
used for?
9.
Create a bar chart or circle graph that represents the
amount and percentage of floor space for each category.
10.
Analyze your data and graphs, and write a statement
that describes how floor space is used in the mall.
Can you use this information to make any conjectures
about the mall?
11.
What can you say about malls from your analysis of numbers
of shops and floor space?
