Thursday, October 11, 2012

Math Field Trips Part 1: Mini Golf

As I've posted before, why should the arts and humanities get all the fun for field trips? There are some great field trips within reach of any school. Although I have mentioned mini golf before in previous posts, I want to post it again with some additional ideas of how to make it work.

Mini Golf!

Putt Putt offers a multitude of math lessons you need only draw the students attention to the game play.

Tally The Degrees & Angles:

Have students keep a tally sheet of the various types of angles or degrees they use to hit each shot. This could be done in numerous ways depending on the skill set of your students.

  • For younger students, you could have them tally the number of Straight, Right, Obtuse & Acute angles they use in each shot (for example, putt one was a straight line, putt two was an acute angle, putt three was a straight line in the hole)

  • For older students you could have them sum the angles used at each hole (for example, putt one was a straight line 180degrees, putt two was a 20 degree angle that went into the hole. The sum of degrees was 200.

  • For even older students you could have them sum the degrees of not only the initial hit but also the degrees of angles after contact (for example, putt one was a straight line 180degrees, that took a 45 degree bounce off the wall and stopped).

Use Negative & Positive Score Counts:

Each hole will have a designated par. For example, hole one might be a par three, meaning the golfer should be able to make it in the hole in three shots. To introduce negatives, have each student start at the par and count backwards for each stroke. Thus, starting at a par 3, a student who took 5 shots would have a score of -2. Therefore, in contrast to traditional golf scoring, the highest score wins.

Additionally, in teams of three, each student could tally the scores at the end of the hole and rank them in order from least to greatest.

No Putt Putt Course Within Driving Distance? Make One In Your Classroom!

It doesn't take a contractor to make something for your students, they will have a blast no matter how cheesy it is. Simply bring in a couple boxes, some putters, golf balls. Take one of your wide boxes that is not very tall and cut a hole in it. Use the other boxes as obstacles. If you need a boarder bring in some 2x4's. Take some pics and send them to us and we will post it on our page!


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