Friday, July 5, 2013

#MakeOverMonday Week 4 Internet Cafes??

Dan Meyer chose a problem with this advertisement for our #MakeOverMonday challenge next week ...

And I could hear my students asking ... Whaaaat?  What's an Internet cafe?  Why not just go to the local coffee shop, bookstore, or almost any corner store where wi-fi is free?

So if I stuck with this problem I would show students the advertisement and ask ...
What questions come to mind?
What might you do with this information?
What other information might you need?
And at that point, I might ask, how much Internet time do you need per week?  Which of these cafes would be your "go-to" spot?

I also thought about changing it up a bit since Internet cafes' are not something my students would use.  In the March/April 2013 issue of The Saturday Evening Post there was this article:  "Howto Save a Bundle on Smartphone Service" by Jeff Bertolucci.  The article made me wonder why I pay so much for my Smartphone if I don't have to.  The article had a link to a chart outlining several prepaid plans and their basic costs.  I started to click on the links and ran across this ad for Republic Wireless.  I don't have teens at my house, but if I did, I might be interested as a parent in pursuing a plan something like this ... much less expensive than what I pay now!  (I might want to pursue this plan for myself!)

So my #MakeOver would go something like this ... Your parents are insisting that you take responsibility for some of your expenses as you head to high school.  They are going to get you a prepaid Smartphone with unlimited service through Republic Wireless - if you'll pay for half the cost!  They show you this ad and say:  Since you have to pay half the cost, which of these plans do you want to choose?  

At this point I'll show students the advertisement and say: Talk with your teammates to determine if one of these choices is better than the other.  How might you represent the information graphically?  Will it matter which of the 2 plans you choose?  If so, explain your choice and give a mathematically accurate reason.

Then for our emphasis on literacy/writing in math class, my prompt might be:  How might you represent your decision making process to your parents mathematically?  Write your parents a letter explaining the choice you have made.  Provide a clear and mathematically accurate explanation.

PS ... Are there Internet cafes' in your area?  Do you use the free wi-fi in your local coffee shops?  How many beverages do you purchase for that "free" benefit???


  1. I am so glad that I wasn't the only one wondering about the internet café issue! :) For the smartphone problem, you might also ask your students how long they have to keep the phone for the price to be the same. If your students are like mine, they are changing phones constantly, so the length of ownership would be an interesting discussion too :)

    1. Yes - Internet cafes may exist somewhere but not here. I wanted to do something with the purchase of coffee but couldn't quite figure that out. I know my students do hang out in coffee shops. But for the most part they use their phones.

      Your suggestion to ask about length of ownership of the phone is awesome ... absolutely essential. They would never keep the same phone all through high school!

      Thanks for dropping by! I appreciate your feedback.