A New Kind of Math Class


Tanner Winchester , BNN Reporter

High School Math teacher Forrest Matthews is teaching a new kind of math class this year called Occupational and Technical Math.  When asked why Mr. Matthews wanted to teach this class, his responses was, “I want kids to learn this math as it will help them when they are out in the real world.”

Here is an example of how this math class is different a traditional class.  One project has to do with maple sugaring.  Students need to figure out how long the line would need to be for each tree, and then to the tank, how much each tap would cost, how much sap each tree would produce, and how much sap each bucket could hold.  In addition, students calculate the cost of the containers for the syrup and how much wood needed to boil the sap down. Finally. students must determine the selling price for the product.

Mr. Matthews thinks the students are learning and gaining information from each topic that has been presented to them in class.  He says, “Students seem really engaged in what they do during each class.”

When asked if he would want to teach this class again, he stated, “Of course I would; this is one of my favorite classes to teach.”  Mr. Matthews went on to say he is hoping that next year this class could be expanded to a double block, meaning 180 minutes, rather than the 90 minute block we have now.