Weekly Reader Connections

Teacher Guide: Lesson 9.6

The Weekly Reader Connections feature on Kids' Place Houghton Mifflin Math provides your students with additional information about the topics that appear in the Curriculum Connection feature in their student books.

The article “Toothbrush Is King of Inventions” reports on the results of a survey in which respondents were asked to rate the importance of four high-tech and low-tech items. The results of the survey clearly suggest that a commonly used low-tech item can be deemed even more important than high-tech items. Ask students why they think that the toothbrush was considered to be the one item that most people said they “couldn't live without.” Students are likely to mention the effects of poor dental health that would result from not using a toothbrush. With this, students become aware of how a simple (“low-tech”) item can have much greater importance in daily life than any of the cited “high-tech” items.

The Word Wise activity challenges students to name familiar items that they believe belong to each of two groups — “high-tech” or “low-tech.” For students who have difficulty developing their lists, you may explain that high-tech items include “machines” and other items that have many moving parts; whereas, most low-tech items are not mechanical and may have few or no moving parts.

Encourage students to specify both high-tech and low-tech inventions in their survey questions for the Data Hunt activity. After they share their lists with their partners, ask students to contribute to a class list of high-tech and low-tech inventions. Allow students to share their reasons for choosing the most important and least important items in the survey question.

Houghton Mifflin Math Grade 6