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Mathematics Grade 6
Strand: RATIOS AND PROPORTIONAL RELATIONSHIPS (6.RP) Standard 6.RP.3
After reading Odysseus and the Cyclops students will complete variety of problem solving activities.
The story of Odysseus and the Cyclops is found in Homers book Odysseus. There are many different versions and translations of the Greek myth. In the story, Odysseus and his crew of sailors, looking for food and water, dock in the land of the Cyclops. One Cyclops, Polyphemus, captures Odysseus and his men. Polyphemus takes the men home to eat. Odysseus get Polyphemus drunk and pokes out his eye. Odysseus and his men escape by clinging to the undersides of the sheep as they go out the door.
Invitation to Learn
Read the story of Odysseus and the Cyclops to the students. Ask them how big they think the Cyclops was.
Possible Extensions / Adaptations
The students can determine the size of other Cyclops possessions.
This same teaching format works well to help students determine sizes and distances in making space models. (If the Earth were the size of a basketball, what object would be the size of the moon?)
In the book, Cry Uncle (chapter 12), the older boy divides their bedroom using the ratio of their ages. Read and discuss this to the students. Have the students pretend they must share a room with an older brother or sister. Have them determine what fraction of their rooms they would have, using the older brothers methods from the story.
Homework & Family Connections
Assign students to find the ratio of their height to the height of their parents or a sibling. Using this ratio, have them determine what different sizes of clothing, beds, bedrooms, and other objects would be if made to this scale.
Evaluate the students explanations of how they developed the math equation to determine the size of their objects.