Archive for Math & Science

Math in ComEd

For my first Action Project in Street Math our goal was to relate math to electricity using a real world application.  It was difficult to find an equation that could be related to the real world application of electricity. I did this project by using Pythagorean Theorem to find the length of angled streets. You can see my presentation below if you would like to learn more.

Bamboo Bridges

For my first Action Project in Urban Planning (Math and Science) I designed a bridge with HM and GL.  This project was difficult because I’m (obviously) not an engineer, and have never tried to build something like this.  Our goal was to hold 15 pounds, which we did way better than.  We used bamboo and duct tape to build the bridge, and it took about two days of building.  We went through a great deal of trial and error, but ending up having the best bridge in class!  See the video below of our bridge in action.

26.5 LB in Books on a Bamboo Bridge! from JH on Vimeo.

A story about a pendulum

For my final Action Project in my math and science class (Light & Sound), we all learned about a time keeping device, I chose the pendulum.  This was an extremely interesting project, mostly because I got to research Galileo, who in my opinion is the best engineer ever.  Although this project was interesting, it was hard to figure out the math of the concept.  Building the prototype of a pendulum was equally difficult.  See my report below.


My device looks is a pendulum.  It consists of two metal poles to hole it up, and a rope with a metal bar on the end to go from side to side hitting the metal poles and making a sound.  Every one second it hits the bar, each time it hits the first bar, hits the second bar, and goes back to hitting the first bar it completes one cycle.  The math behind a pendulum is pretty simple once you figure it out:

 1 cycle equals three seconds.
30 cycles equals one minute.
1,800 cycles is one hour

X = Cycle
Z = Seconds

10x = 30z
100x = 300z

In 1602, The Italian scientist Galileo Galilei studied the property of a pendulum. Galileo discovered the crucial property that makes pendulums useful as timekeepers, called isochronism; the period of the pendulum is approximately independent of the amplitude or width of the swing. The pendulum is an extremely key device in history for timekeeping. When Galileo invented it, it was instantly a famous and amazing idea. It goes on forever all by itself and requires very few materials. When technology wasn’t available back in the 1600’s, a sundial was the most precise timekeeping device.

“Cleveland Museum of Natural History.” Foucault Pendulum. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Mar. 2013.
Drake, Stillman. “Galileo at Work: His Scientific Biography”. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 2003. Print.
“The History of the Pendulum.” Bukisa. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Mar. 2013.

I made the radio!

For our Light and Sound (math) class we created and decorated radios.  After completing this project I was able to understand the basic principles of frequencies by putting the radio together. I learned about the uses of a radio, especially the uses for a radio in foreign countries.  The most difficult part of this project was connecting the extremely short wires together, while still trying to keep the radio looking nice… Check out my presentation below!


In the Light and Sound course, we built our own version of a spectrograph to advance our understanding on how light works. A spectrograph is used in space to help scientists understand the properties of atmospheres, planets and stars.

We built the spectrograph to find out how light is reflected to different light sources and how colors are extracted to light. We tested it on three different lights sources in order for our spectrograph to make a rainbow.

For this project we had a team partner in order to design and build a better spectrograph. We improved the original template to make it smaller and more compact. I learner that there are light that we can’t see but animals might see. Below is my slide rocket.

Google SketchUp Design

In my Design and Engineering (math & science), our goal was to use google sketchup to create a system that generates power, I made a solar panel.  This design helps to solve the seventh MDG (millenium development goal) environmental sustainability.  This project helped me understand how solar panels go on a house and why the placement is so crucial (facing east to get the most of the sun as possible).

Windmill Milestone 3

For our third and final milestone in our math and science class (design and engineering) we designed, created, and tested solar panels.  We did this by first planning out what materials to use, and then we  drew out the design to see how it would look.  We used paper plates for wings, and used wooden sticks and super glue to attach it to a motor.  We then hooked the volt meter up to the motor, and used a hair dryer to see how fast we could get our motor to go.  This helped me to better understand the mechanical aspect of how windmills work and how to make them more efficient.

We also had an in-person meeting with Alex Bishai from Windonics who taught us the scientific aspect of how windmills work.

“Windmill Meeting.” Personal interview, Alex Bishai. Oct. 23, 2012.

Solar Panel

For our design and engineering class, we built a solar panel to heat water.  Our goal was to build a (low budget) solar panel that was simple enough to set up in any location and could effectively heat water on it’s own.    This helped me by learning how to incorporate sustainable living into our daily lives.

Water Station JH

For the Design & Engineering project as action, I created a water station with SM, HM, and LN. Our goal was to create a simple water station in under twenty dollars.  We did this by brainstorming and figuring out that we can hang a bucket from a tree in order to control the water flow.  Our water station was able to efficiently pour water and wash hands with ease. This station could help people who don’t have plumbing or access to a sink.

DDN News Cast! JH

For the fourth and final milestone in Cure (math & science), we created a video.  I made this video with MML and HD.  We talked about what the UN can do to help the world cure diseases.  We did this by making a news report including a special segment call MathCenter!  Feel free to watch the video below.