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Research mathematical principles | Math in Action | 3-5, 6-8, 9-10, 11-12

Student Objective

Students will be able to:
1. identify different mathematical theories and principles
2. conduct research using various search engines and methods
3. explain how mathematical principles and theories are used in the real-world
4. develop and share oral presentation highlighting learnings


Step 1: Brainstorm mathematical principles and theories

Use a shared class Jamboard to brainstorm different mathematical theories or principles (e.g. law, theorem, or other properties, etc). Have each student select one principle they want to research (it is OK if more than one student selects the same principle).

*Teachers can review this PDF from Harvard highlighting different mathematical theories

Step 2: Conduct research on real-world applications

Have students conduct research about their chosen principle, focusing on ways this principle shows up in the real world. Students can use the following tools for their research:

Newsela: Students can log into Newsela and search for articles about mathematics being used in authentic settings by professionals.

Tween Tribune by the Smithsonian: Students can visit this website and use strategic keywords to locate articles about mathematics being used in authentic contexts.

My Plan: Students can visit the My Plan website and search its career database using key terms (e.g., math, statistics, probability, etc.) to locate jobs that use mathematics in practical ways.

Step 3: Design and present findings

Students will then summarize the information – the application of the mathematical principle in daily life – by making a one-minute oral presentation to their peers, which includes a visual aid. Teachers can extend this assignment by having students explain how they use the mathematical principle in their daily life.

Students can use the following EdTech to create their presentations:

Canva: Students can log into Canva and then create a poster to use as a visual aid for their presentation. Students can share their poster by projecting it or uploading a link to a class website.

Poster My Wall: Students can use this website to locate a template for a poster and then customize it for their presentation. Students can download it from this website and then project it during their presentation.


Students identify, locate, and organize information about the practical application(s) of a mathematical principle, which can foster their intellectual pursuits in the field of mathematics. In addition, the presentation provides a creative outlet for building awareness focused on ways professionals use math in varying contexts.

EdTech used in this activity:


Alternative Ed Tech you could use:

Tween Tribune by the Smithsonian, Poster My Wall, Newsela, My Plan