Weekly Reader Connections

Teacher Guide: Lesson 13.5

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 “When Is a Cricket Not a Cricket?” discusses the problem of the infestation of so-called Mormon Crickets in parts of several western states over the past few years. The insects, not actually crickets but a kind of shield-backed katydid, were named after having infested the fields planted by Mormon settlers in Utah in 1848. Today, huge numbers of Mormon crickets cause many problems including the contamination of public water sources.

The Word Wise activity asks students to research various kinds of “natural disasters,” looking for both those that involve animal life and those that involve kinds of weather. Students may report on such natural disasters as locust invasions and volcanic eruptions.

The Data Hunt activity introduces students to two methods of using cricket chirps to find the approximate outdoor temperature, in degrees Fahrenheit. Students first apply the given formula to find three temperatures. Then, along with a partner, they compare the two methods.

  1. Use the formula to find the temperature if the number of times a cricket chirps in 1 minute is:
    • 112 (68°F)
    • 204 (91°F)
    • 167 (82°F)
  2. Two methods of determining the temperature are described above. Is there a relationship between the two methods? Write your answer in a math journal or discuss it with a classmate. (Students should recognize that the relationship is based on the fact that 15 minutes is one-fourth, 1/4 of 1 hour.)

Houghton Mifflin Math Grade 6