Volunteers bring magic and math to McKinley

The McKinley Elementary School Parent Teacher Organization sponsored family night once again this year, promoting math skills with Biz Kid$ booths, volunteer-manned math stations and a magician Jan. 30.

Using a balance to discover how many Legos a marker weighs, Jareck Mohr reaches for more Legos while brother Bryson and mom Laurel assess his work. Photos by Olivia Koester

Using a balance to discover how many Legos a marker weighs, Jareck Mohr reaches for more Legos while brother Bryson and mom Laurel assess his work. Photos by Olivia Koester

More than 20 students set up Biz Kid$ booths, determining business plans and selling their wares – everything from baked goods to balloon animals.

Rainbow Loom jewelry was by far the most popular product, found at half of the booths around the school.

Amanda Olson, 9, and one of her friends sold Rainbow Loom jewelry and charms, but the girls decided that they should bring along some homemade greeting cards, too, knowing many classmates would also be peddling Rainbow Loom accessories.

“We had to do a whole bunch of math,” Amanda said. The girls examined start-up costs first and went from there.

Sawyer Langemo, 8, looked at his costs to calculate prices for his art – crayons hot glued to canvases and melted with a hair dryer. He learned a lesson in loans when he borrowed money from his father to make change for customers.

In addition to shopping, families could participate in a variety of math activities.

Students catapulted marshmallows to learn about measuring distance at one of the event’s most popular stations.

“It’s the only time you’re allowed to launch marshmallows down the hall,” one dad remarked to himself.

Students played various card games to work on addition and subtraction skills.

In the middle of the event, magician Brian Richards performed a special math-themed act: “Making It All Add Up!”

Children crowded the cafeteria, giggling as Richards joked with them.

More than 50 volunteers helped to make the event a success.

Olivia Koester is at olivia.koester@ecm-inc.com

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