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PUMAS (poo' • mas) -- is a collection of brief examples showing how math and science topics taught in K-12 classes can be used in interesting settings, including every day life.

The examples are written primarily by scientists, engineers, and other content experts having practical experience with the material. They are aimed mainly at classroom teachers, and are available to all interested parties via the PUMAS web site.

Our goal is to capture, for the benefit of pre-college education, the flavor of the vast experience that working scientists have with interesting and practical uses of math and science.

- Ralph Kahn
Pumas Editor and Founder

Featured PUMAS Example

Volcanoes and Urban Planning by Lucas Moxey
The numerous annual volcanic eruptions that occur worldwide evidence the potential dangers they often create. Volcanoes are found across a wide variety of geologic settings, including subduction zones (i.e.: Andes, Cascades, Aleutian Islands) and hotspot settings (i.e.: Hawaii-Emperor Seamounts, Galapagos, Azores). Regardless of their location, history has demonstrated that volcanoes pose a vivid and real hazard to regional settlements and environments. The eruption of Mt. St. Helens (Washington – 1980), Nevado del Ruiz (Colombia – 1985), Mt. Hudson (Chile – 1991), Mt. Pinatubo (Indonesia – 1991) and Reventador (Ecuador – 2002) are just some of the numerous examples in which volcanic eruptions affect large regions.
(view this example)

View the Examples

There are currently 88 examples in the PUMAS Collection.
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We are always looking for neat examples of Practical Uses of Math And Science.
Please contribute!