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The Wisconsin Menger Sponge Project is a collaborative project between the Department of Mathematics at Mount Mary College, Wisconsin High Schools and Middle Schools.

Goals
  • Construct a Level 3 Menger Sponge (using origami and recycled business cards)
  • Generate enthusiasm for mathematics
  • Provide opportunities for students to learn mathematics through an engaging hands-on project
  • Connect teachers, students and Mount Mary College to develop a math community

Timeline
May 2012: Project Launch at the WMC annual math conference.

NOW: Accepting participants, collecting business cards and Level 1 and 2 Sponges

May 2013: Project Conclusion and Display at the WMC annual math conference (http://www.wismath.org/annual-conference/)

The completed project will be available for display at local schools,community centers, museums, etc.Sign up now for the Menger Sponge to visit you.

How to Get Started
1. Determine how this project will enhance your curriculum.
The Menger Sponge Project provides opportunities to teach a variety of math topics:
  • Counting Techniques
  • Scale Factors
  • Surface Area
  • Volume
  • Measurement
  • Limits
  • Logarithms
  • Fractals
  • Modeling

The Resources page contains many ideas to link this project to your math curriculum. You will find powerpoints, worksheets, videos, etc. Feel free to add your own ideas or resources.

2. Collect Business Cards.
Ask around. Have your students ask their parents and friends. You'd be surprised how many people have outdated or unused business cards they'd be happy to donate. I recommend keeping it "green" and recycle unwanted cards with this project. I do have a small stash of cards if you do need some to get started. Just let me know.

3. Start Folding and Building.

Visit the Directions for Building page for instructions. Don't be discouraged. For some the first cube can tricky but you will catch on quickly. (It can become addicting.) Students have even asked to stay in from recess to keep building!

4. Share your Results.

Be sure to list your school, student participants, and what you've built on the Progress and Participation page. Have your students sign their work. Get in touch with me to arrange the transportation of your sponges.


Please let me know if you have any questions or need help getting starting. I may also be available to visit your school to help get your project up and running or for your students to show off their work.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Roxanne Back, Ph.D.
backr@mtmary.edu
Department Chair of Mathematics
Mount Mary College
2900 N. Menomonee River Parkway
Milwaukee, WI 53222-4597
414-258-4810 Ext. 418