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Teacher: Tamara Henderson who teaches at Emerson and Lincoln Elementary Schools in Elmhurst, IL. Tamara Henderson can be contacted at

Name of Best Practice: Working with Spreadsheets

Rationale/Purpose of Event: To integrate physical education and technology. Additionally, it was hoped it would motivate students to give their best during jogging time.

Suggested Grade Level: 4-12

Materials Needed: Tally sheets, Computer, Spreadsheet software program (Microsoft Excel for example).

Working with Spreadsheets

Students keep tally of the number of laps they run during their jogging time each day. They record this on a tally sheet.

At the end of the month the class meets in the computer lab where they enter each days laps onto a spreadsheet. They learn how to enter a formula which totals the laps and gives them the total number of laps they ran that month. Next, they enter a formula which converts the laps into the total number of miles they ran. (For example, 7 laps (at our school) equals a mile. The computer takes the total number of laps they ran and divides it by 7. This will be the total number of miles they ran that month).

As the months go on and they are more familiar with spreadsheets, they can figure out the average miles they ran each day. They can enter formulas to give them the total number of miles their class ran...their grade level ran...etc. Miraculously, the students are much more excited about jogging and try to improve their miles ran each month.

Publish class or grade level totals in school newspaper or on bulletin boards. Have a chart or graph on a wall showing the grade levels progress as the year goes on. Students can set goals and try to reach them each month. Be open to other formulas the students may want to try.

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Posted on PEC: 10/9/2001 and has received 96 votes.

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