There's no better example of a 21st Century Math Project than an awesome site, the
mathematically famous Wolfram Alpha. Yes, sure Wolfram Alpha will do your
class’s homework for them, but the reality is that that only emphasizes the need for
higher order thinking. Computers can solve linear equations, but as of today
they still struggle with word problem and application. One day. One day.

Until then the human brain has value!

On its way to growing a real brain! |

Well okay, not really. When I decide to create a new middle or high school project, Wolfram Alpha is one of my first stops. In particular when I’m attempting
to use global data, I’m able to compare countries very quickly. This is
particularly helpful when trying to find interesting mathematical problems and it turns into my own personal inquiry project. For
instance if I’m trying to build an assign around GDP and exponential functions,
if I choose two countries that do not intersect, it makes for a less
mathematically interesting exercise. Of course using one problem built around
this case, is worthwhile, but if I built the entire assignment where nothing
intersects, it’s weird and useless.

Using Wolfram Alpha in cooperation with one of many Online
Regression calculators helps rounds ideas into more precise problems.

There is a pay subscription that would make using this tool
infinitely more useful, but I have yet to use it. For anyone with a familiar
with vector graphics (like the open source Inkscape; more on this in another
post) there is a way to get vector exports of graphs on Wolfram Alpha. In order
to make it more usuable in an assignment, you may need to tweak the graphic so
using a vector program works well.

Nonetheless, Wolfram Alpha is super duper at helping with
answer keys!

If you aren’t using Wolfram Alpha, check it out!

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