Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Math is Real Life: Crockpot Group

It's the first Wednesday of the month, which means it's time to link up with all of my awesome math blogging buddies for Math is Real Life!

A monthly REAL WORLD math blog link-up hosted by

I love this linky, because I'm constantly trying to stress to my students that math isn't just for school, but that it is all around them!

Ok, so first of all, I have to tell you about two different students who came up with real world math problems in class just with things that were around us.  I was passing out file folders to make our government lapbooks and there were 50 folders in the box and four different colors of folders.  One student says, "Mrs. Webber we can figure out how many of each color there are by doing 50 divided by 4!" Wow!  Then later I was passing out notebook paper for a math problem and I had opened a brand new package of paper with 150 sheets in it.  A different student says, "Mrs. Webber, if you gave each student one piece of paper, then you would have enough for 6 classes if there were 25 students in each class!"  OMG!!!!!  They really are getting it!  Made this math teacher super proud!

On to the actual post at hand... Crockpot group!

My partner teacher has quite the love for her crockpot.  She has been known to make crockpot meals for breakfast, and dinner in the same day!  She decided that she wanted to put a group together that would make crockpot freezer meals (everything you would need for a crockpot meal frozen in a gallon size bag).  This would require getting 10 people together, each person makes one recipe 10 times to share with everyone in the group.  I said, "Sign me up!"  It took us a while to get all 10 people together including some last minute adds and drops, but we exchanged on Saturday and this is the haul I came home with!
We met at a Starbucks (too small for our little exchange) so we went to a parking lot next to the Starbucks and traded bags in the freezing cold drizzling morning! It was a little crazy and VERY cold!

For my contribution to the group, I decided to make Chicken Fajitas from {this} recipe. Seemed easy enough and wouldn't require any cooking before hand on my part.  Now for the math.

First I I had to write out my recipe.
·       2 peppers 
·       1 onion
·       1 1/2 pound chicken breast
·       1/2 cup chicken broth
·       taco seasoning packet
·       1 tsp. chili powder
·       1/2 tsp. paprika
·       1 tsp. salt
Then I had to multiply each ingredient by 10!

For most of it, not too hard.  1/2 tsp of paprika = 5 total tsp of paprika.  I actually didn't really even need to worry about that too much because I had to measure out 1/2 tsp for each bag as I put them all together.  Let me say that I have never used that much paprika at one time!

There were a couple of tricky math conversions for me.  1/2 cup of chicken broth = how much of a can???  I had no idea, so I went to Google to verify my conversions that 4 oz = 1/2 cup.  Well, each can had 14.5 oz in it, so I could do almost 4 freezer bags with one can.  Which meant I would need a total of 3 cans, which were sitting in my pantry!

Next was the taco seasoning.  We don't buy the individual packets, because they really are a rip off.  We buy the giant 20 ounce seasoning from Sam's Club.  I didn't know how much seasoning was in an individual packet though.  Again, I went to Google.  I packet has 1 ounce, which is actually 2 tbls!  Ok, easy enough!

I did all of this math before I went to store.  Here are the groceries before we got started! Sorry for the blurry picture!

I had to write the directions for the fajitas 10 times as well.  Each bag has the directions for my meal

The hubby did a great job of cutting the veggies while I added the seasoning to each bag.

Here are 10 of my bags before they went into the freezer.

I kept one bag and got 9 different bags in return.  I'm so exicted to have 10 different meals ready to put the crockpot over the next month!

One of the most fun parts of this experience was sitting at Starbucks sharing our stories of converting measurements, cost cutting measures, and time it took to put the bags together.  I was getting a kick out of the frustrations and loving hearing all the math talk!

Don't forget to go check out all of the other Math is Real Life posts to see where math is in the real world!


  1. I need to find a group with whom I can do this! What a great idea!!

  2. What a FABULOUS idea, Rissa! I am going to pass this on to some friends...because everyone knows I don't "know how" to cook! Lol! Math really is everywhere!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  3. I am going to have to organize one of these trades! What a wonderful and easy idea to get several meals for just one! :)

  4. Great post! With baby #2 coming soon, this would be a great way to stock the freezer!

    Teaching Math by Hart

  5. I sooooooo need a group of people to do this with!!! Thanks for linking up with us!!

    Mathematically yours,
    Jamie aka MissMathDork!


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