Monday, October 27, 2008

Word Problems Before the Election

I like the idea of social justice math.

I have absolutely no training in it. I haven't found resources that can be lifted as is, though the previous link has several inspirational resources. Ideally, I'd customize ideas to my students, or better yet have them customize the ideas. Hasn't happened yet. 

My small compromise is to bring up issues in the warm-up journal word problems. This week's focus is the election. If you're looking for ideas, read on. (Though they will need adapting unless you're interested in South Dakota.)

For every 23 registered Republicans in SD, there are 25 people who are registered as something other than Republican. If there are 243,524 registered Republicans, how many people are registered as something else? (Link)

Proposition 11 is the state issue that will probably get the most national attention. (It’s the law that would ban abortion in the state.) An Argus Leader Media/KELO-TV poll showed a dead heat on Initiated Measure 11, the state's proposed abortion ban: 44% said they'd vote for it and 44% said they'd vote against it if the election were held immediately. It takes one more than half the voters to decide an election. If there are 508,240 registered voters in the state, how many more people does either side need to convince to win the election? (Link)

The poll about Measure 11 talked to 800 likely voters. If 12 % of people polled were undecided, how many people were undecided?

Most people in South Dakota have 6 weeks to vote early by stopping by their local courthouse. Saturday was the only day early voting was offered on the Rosebud Reservation. How many fewer days of early voting do residents of Todd county have than other people in the state? (Link)

In the last presidential election 149,244 South Dakotans voted for Kerry and 232,584 voted for Bush. If there were 508,240 registered voters in the state, what percentage of registered voters did not vote? (Link)

No comments: