USA TODAY® Related Activities

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Internet Activity

Going the Distance

Materials: calculator, two index cards

Work in a group of two or three.

Yellowstone—Here We Come

Read the following problem. Then follow the steps under Procedure for the Activity to see how to use a table to solve the problem.

Emilie and Justyne are planning to ride their bicycles and meet at the entrance to Yellowstone Park in Gardiner, Montana. Emilie lives 90 miles from the entrance and Justyne lives 120 miles from the entrance. Emilie plans to leave her home at 8 A.M. and average 10 miles per hour. Justyne will leave at 10 A.M. and can average 14 miles per hour because her route is partly downhill. Who will arrive first in Gardiner? What time will that be?

Procedure for the Activity

Step 1  One way to solve this problem is to make a table showing the distances traveled by each bicycle rider. Copy or print out the table below.

 Emilie must travel 90 miles. Justyne must travel 120 miles. Time Miles Traveled Time Miles Traveled 8 A.M. 0 8 A.M. 0 9 A.M. 10 9 A.M. 0 10 A.M. 10 A.M. 0 11 A.M. 11 A.M. 14 noon noon 1 P.M. 1 P.M. 2 P.M. 2 P.M. 3 P.M. 3 P.M. 4 P.M. 4 P.M. 5 P.M. 5 P.M. 6 P.M. 6 P.M. 7 P.M. 7 P.M. 8 P.M. 8 P.M.

Step 2  Look at Column 2 in the table for Emilie. What does the 10 listed by 9 A.M. represent?

Step 3  Look at Column 2 in the table for Justyne. What does the 14 listed by 11 A.M. represent?

Step 4  Fill in the entire table for both girls.

Step 5  Who will arrive at Gardiner first? What time will that be?

Step 6  Find another way to solve this problem. Describe your method.

Step 7  Solve the following distance problems by using a table. Show the table you used for each problem.

Distance Problems

1.  The distance of a flight from New York City to San Francisco is 2572 miles. A B737-300 jet leaves New York at 7 A.M. traveling at an average air speed of 410 miles per hour. A B747-100 jet leaves New York at 9 A.M. traveling at an average air speed of 505 miles per hour. Which plane will arrive at the airport in San Francisco first? What time will that be?

2.  The distance from Minneapolis to Chicago is 405 miles. Nichole leaves Minneapolis at 10 A.M. and plans to average 50 miles per hour on her trip to Chicago. Gregory leaves Minneapolis at 12 noon and plans to average 60 miles per hour. Will Gregory pass Nichole before they reach Chicago? Explain.

3.  The distance from Houston to Tulsa is 478 miles. Shanna leaves Houston at 6 A.M. on the route to Tulsa. She plans to average 55 miles per hour. Georg will leave Houston at 8 A.M. on the route to Tulsa. He plans to average 65 miles per hour. They plan to keep in contact during the day and meet for a short visit before continuing to their destinations. How far from Houston will they be when they meet? What time will it be?

Wrapping Up the Activity

Write a distance problem similar to the problems in this activity. Give the problem a name. Write the name of your problem on each of two index cards. Write the problem on one card. Then solve the problem by making a table. Write the solution and the table on the second index card. Exchange your problem index card with another group, but keep the solution card. After the other group has a solution, have them check their solution by using the solution card.

Tennessee