Eighth Graders Finish a Sticky Algebra 2 Project

If you have visited South Middle School over the last couple of months, you may have noticed the word “Mindset” posted on the library windows.

Students have spent the year learning about Growth and Fixed Mindsets and how they apply to school and life.

Growth Mindset is what you need to have, this means you’re willing to try new things and not give up until you succeed.  Fixed Mindset means you’re set in your ways and not willing to try something new and will give up if your way doesn’t work, explains Tanner Neilsen, eighth-grader at South Middle School.

With Growth Mindset it’s important to set goals and identify the next steps to get there. This is the process Algebra 2 students in Nick Potts class used to finish their project.

Creating a super-size version of the word “Mindset” out of sticky notes wasn’t easy.  Students had to determine the cost of the project, figure out the dimensions and then determine how many sticky notes would be needed.  They used Microsoft Excel to create graphs of the word.

Ryan Vogel, grade 8

“Everyone had a different idea, and we had to problem-solve to figure out how to make curves with square shapes without making a lot of gaps,” eighth-grader Calli Earney said.

Students had to pick a design that best accomplished the goals of the project.  The project had five main goals: Price, Easy-to-Read, Symmetrical, Bright and Uses Entire Space Effectively.

As they priced each design, students quickly found out that price varies depending on the color of the sticky note.

“The cheapest design did not have background and wasn’t visually appealing. Just to make the letters would have only cost $9.49 and used about 1,200 sticky notes,” eighth-grader Michael Adamson said.

The most expensive design was $53.59 and used 2,800 purple and yellow sticky notes. Single packs of purple are the most expensive.

Students decided to go with the design that was the most visually appealing and cost effective.  Eighth-grader Ryan Vogel’s idea met that criteria. His design cost $35.66 and used 2,800 sticky notes.

Overall students enjoyed using math and Growth Mindset to problem solve and complete this project.

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