## Monday, August 29, 2011

### Excel Math: The Numbers

This blog is about using math in our everyday lives. Math we learned in elementary school.

I rarely write directly about our product (Excel Math curriculum) because you can learn about it at our main website and our online store. But this week, as many are returning to school, I think I'll share some distinctive characteristics about Excel Math. These features are obvious to me as the editor, and to many teachers who use the curriculum.

Here are a few numbers about how we teach numbers:
• We offer 7 grades, with 155 lessons per grade level, for a total of 1085 daily Lesson Sheets.
• There are 794 homework assignments (124 in the 6 upper grade levels and 50 in Kindergarten).
• Excel math includes 174 "assessment opportunities", or what most of us would call TESTS.
• Create A Problem higher level thinking challenges appear on the back of 120 of the tests.
• We offer 252 pages of manipulative masters that can be duplicated and used in class in lieu of counters, real clocks, etc.
• There are 120 Activities in Grade 1, and 68 Activities split across Grades 2-6.
Now a few more details about the numbers, calculations and discussions in Excel Math:

We focus on numbers 0-100 in Kindergarten and First Grade, up to 1000 in Second, 1,000,000 in Third, and 1,000,000,000,000 in Fourth.

We never do get large enough numbers for them to balance the US national budget though ... is that why we are at this point with our government finances?

We discuss Roman numerals: I, II, III, IV, V, X, L, C, M etc. and how that number system differs from Arabic numerals.

We talk about fractions 1/4, percentages 40%, decimals .55 and negative -13 numbers, as well as even 2 and odd 3 numbers and integers 5.

NOTE: Spoiler Alert - in a rare breach of secrecy I am going to give away some answers! And I must say this is the first time I have looked at our products using this particular view in mind:

The answer to the first question in Second Grade is 4. The last answer is 15 kids.

The answer to the first question in Fourth Grade is 1432. The last answer is 269 and 263.

The answer to the first question in Sixth Grade is also 209,378. The last answer is \$31.20.
To conclude, here are a pair of number jokes:

1. There are 10 kinds of people in the world - those that understand binary number systems and those that don't.

2. The computer told me I had to choose an 8-character password, so I chose Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.

My next blog post will focus on the words we use in our curriculum.