Build Math Confidence  February 2018 Volume 105
Upcoming Math Confidence Events
Wednesday February 7 AMTNJ Winter Conference Monroe Township, NJ
Tuesday March 6 Everyone Reading CUNY Grad Center New York, NY
Saturday March 10 Ten County Math Yonkers, NY
Endurance by Astronaut Scott Kelly
Space exploration naturally goes with Math as in this collection of real world problems found in NASA's Space V pdf.  This best seller book by astronaut Scott Kelly (also a former fighter pilot, test pilot, engineer and retired U.S. Navy captain) combines STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) with the peak performance needed to endure the challenges of space travel.   Kelly spent a year (2015-2016) on the International Space Station and describes how  his career and life path.  After a mediocre high school career, he came upon The Right Stuff  by Tom Wolfe in his college campus bookstore and was hooked on becoming an astronaut.   Over 30 years later while on the Space Station, Kelly wrote Wolfe a heartfelt thanks for the inspiration in this  extraterrestrial thank you letter .  
Which Varies?  Instructional Time or Student Learning

Matt Larson, president of NCTM (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics), wrote this article last Fall to help create a conversation about time devoted to Math education.  Does increasing the  amount of time devoted to learning Math in school make a difference?  Some students get more than one period a day devoted to Math but as Larson states " how instructional time is used is as important as the fact that it is allocated."  He adds his two cents about how to provide help boost learning by keeping students as close to grade level as possible with " Students are not removed from grade-level or subject-based instruction to receive targeted support."    In some schools, there may not be a Math lesson on a daily basis:   When my 20 year old son was in elementary school, I would ask "What did you learn in Math today?" sometimes he would say "We did not have Math today" so while the school used the  Everyday Math program, ironically they did not have Math every day. 
10 Viral Math Questions that Stumped the Internet
In early 2018, this collection of viral Math questions was released.  Many of these have been popular on the Internet in recent years.  See what you can figure out or try on your family or neighbors.  (spoiler alert: the answers are located right under the questions!).  Here is an example:
Brain Puzzler

For a calendar, with two six sided dice make all possible monthly dates using two digits (from 01 to 31) by writing one digit (from 0, 1, 2, ..., 8, 9) on each face of the two dice.

Answer to January's Brain Puzzler: 81
Click here for the solution to January 's Brain Puzzler

Thanks, Robin the Math Lady Schwartz        
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