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How to Get Your Kids to do Math and Enjoy It.(no, really.)

Ok, first off, this isn’t a cure-all for a kid who doesn’t like math.

I wish.

I’m pretty sure I’d be a bizillionair if I figured THAT out.

But, I’m also pretty sure your kids are going to want to do the math it takes for this particular experiment to work.

It involves telling the outside temperature using cricket chirps. This can be as complicated or as simple as you’d like, and depending on the age of the child, should be tailored accordingly.

Called Dolbear’s Law, it states that you can get a fairly accurate idea of the temperature outside by counting how many times a cricket chirps in 60 seconds, and it’s the subject of this week’s Nature Just Got Real Sensational Summer mini cast series podcast for kids. This week, it also happens to be narrated by a Treefrog. A Treefrog talking about crickets. Get it? Never let it be said that we don’t have a good sense of the ridiculous here at Weird & Wacky Planet. We totally do.

Here are the steps to take if you want to try this:

Have your kids listen to the podcast episode “How to Tell the Temperature with a Cricket” S1-Ep 2, look over the information sheet, and take the log sheet outside in the early evening to start the experiment.

You can listen to the podcast HERE or wherever you get your podcasts, or watch it as a video HERE,(and see a talking Treefrog) and download the PDF activity for the episode below.

Download PDF • 710KB

What’s involved with the experiment:

Find a cricket chirping. Don’t get too close or it will stop. (Guess how I know that.)

Use a stopwatch or stopwatch app set to 60 seconds.

Count the number of chirps in that 60 seconds.

Divide that number by 4, then add 40.

That should be (or be pretty darn close to) the temperature on your thermometer.

And, just like that - presto, chango - your kids are doing math. Splendidly. Willingly. Joyfully.

You’re welcome.

K.B. and Crew

P.S. If you want a deeper dive, variations on the experiment, science activities, lesson plan, and vocabulary words to give your kids a fuller leaning experience, there is a full activity packet for purchase HERE.

You can get the activity PDF or the lesson plan, or bundle both together for a discount. Regardless, the podcast episode, log sheet and activity PDF are free.

Enjoy this one.

I totally did:)

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