Two high school teachers have found that welding and melding provide a reason to use math, and students are learning an industrial skill while practicing real life calculations and problem solving.
“I really like the welding part of it,” said Caleb Hash, who plans to continue with welding after graduation. “The math project is good because it teaches the kids how to make something and put it to real life, which is really nice. You can figure out the angles and how to cut it.”
Hash’s fire pit was donated to Empty Bowls, an annual fundraiser that supports the Butte Emergency Food Bank. He likes that the welding project designed by welding teacher Denise Bordeleau and math teacher Amanda Curtis was meaningful and engaging.
“I learned how to make it from scratch, figure out the angles I need to cut and how long of pieces to cut to make it look really good,” said Hash.
The idea that the two teachers wanted to follow up on was to “give students a reason to use math,” said Bordeleau. “They see an application to it,” she added. “When I have some of those math skills on the test, my students do better laying it out.”