Day 62 – An Optimization Physical Challenge, and rapper Drake

Here are my non AP Calculus students trying to capture as much land as possible in a rectangular ranch on their desk. This was a fun introduction to optimization and one that I think got them thinking about the ideas involved. I had them solve the problem with tribal and error and then we solved it on the board as our very first optimization problem.

Do you ever do things that you think might get you fired? I played part of a Rihanna song to my AP class today… The intro to “What's My Name?” where Drake says “The square root of 69 is 8 something.” They all of course knew it, and were giggling like crazy at the innuendo. I asked them to ignore Drake the filthy mouthed rapper and focus on Drake the Mathematician, and used that as an (actually incredibly apt) introduction of estimating square roots with differentials. We helped Drake find that “something.” I guess my job might be okay because I turned the song on right after he says “girl, you good with them soft lips.” This stuff plays on the radio!!


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