?What is a USE Math activity
USE Math activities are sustainability-focused, technology-enabled, single class-period projects, each offering students authentic experiences within the context of sustainability in applying various mathematical topics encountered in introductory mathematics courses.
See examples below
Visit the   SISL Math Activity Collection   on the  Mathematics/QR page of the
Sustainability Improves Student Learning (SISL) website to see more activities that are currently under development and (in some cases) in use!
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  1. Carbon Foodprint
    This three-part algebra activity focuses on food-related carbon dioxide emissions. Part 1 of the activity sets the context by examining how dietary choices impact carbon emissions. Part 2 explores the impact of population growth and per capita carbon emissions on emissions at the national level. Part 3 examines how freezing national carbon emissions at the 2015 level impacts per capita consumption when the population continues to grow.
  2. Who Goes There?
    In this activity students use data to rank species on the food chain and compute energy flow ratios. Then students use their calculations to estimate fish populations in the Chincoteague Bay. Finally, students discuss the impact of the ecosystem and humans on this system. An extension activity presents the Simpson's diversity index and gives students the opportunity to discuss the biodiversity of the system represented by the data.
  3. Choosing Appliances
    In this activity, students compare various options for purchasing new home appliances. In particular, students compare the energy usage of more efficient and less efficient home applicance, and calculate the "payback period" in cases for which the purchase price for the energy efficient model is higher, but the energy savings over time make it less expensive in the long run.
  4. Should I Unplug?
    A wide variety of electronic devices and small appliances are a regular part of students' lives. Many of these products remain plugged in while not in use in students' dorms or apartments. In this project, students measure plug loads of several products using a wattage meter, then compute the monetary costs associated with various unnecessary plug loads.
Go to the Full Carbon Foodprint Activity
Go to the Full Who Goes There? Activity
Go to the Full Choosing Appliances Activity
Go to the Full Should I Unplug? Activity