One of the things that she has provoked us to think about is sugar. We were all amazed at some of the foods that contain added sugar and the vast quantities involved.
She also found a youtube clip for us to look at about the sugar content found in a certain fast food brand. (Click here to find out more...)
Maths for Breakfast
Which got us to thinking about other foods. Breakfast cereals are also very high in sugar, a fact that we confirmed when we researched inside our pantry cupboards for home learning.
To make it visual, we decided to spoon out the sugar content of some popular cereal brands and measure them on the balance scales.
I didn't really want to go and buy sugar for this purpose, so we used sand from the sandpit - it probably has a different molecular weight and density so it was never going to be a perfect substitute for sugar, and yes it tastes different too.
But it served as a satisfactory sugar substitute for our purposes.
Data summarised from http://www.sweetpoison.com.au/atp.pdf
Using data from David Gillespie's website "Sweet Poison", the students completed measurements by converting teaspoons of sugar (or sand) to grams.
Starting with a cup of sand and a spoon
Carefully measure the sand out.
Lots of interesting discussion about spoonfuls.
Should it be level or heaped?
Do all people have the same sized spoon?
Is a spoon a good measure of mass?
Balance out the sugar with the weights.
- really visual
- really hands-on
And we got a bit of an idea as to what a gram is like, and 5 grams, and 10 grams....