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THE INTERNET PIZZA SERVER

Susan Boone sboone@cs.rice.edu
Westside High School H.I.S.D.
Subjects: Mathematics 8-12
last updated:  July 18, 2004

 Topic: Data Collection, Unit Price, Proportions,
Research, & Area of Circles, (many more can be adapted)

Purpose: Students will create their own pizza using choices of toppings. They will be able to "order" their creation from the Internet and see a digitalized version of their pizza. They will use their order to calculate the area of various size pizzas, determine the "better buy", & cost per topping. Students will also have to use research skills to answer questions pertaining to the Internet Pizza Server Home Page.

Materials: Students will need access to the Internet, a metric ruler, and a vivid imagination.

Prior Knowledge: Students must be able to calculate the area of a circle. In order to complete the research portion of the lesson, they should have a very basic understanding of how to "move" through the Internet. (Click once on colored text will send you to that site. To get back to where you were, click on the "back" button.)

Description: This lesson takes the idea of going to a pizza restaurant, ordering a pizza, and determining whether a small, medium, large, or family size pizza is a "better-buy" Students will first need to calculate the area of each of the pizzas. (This information is given in pixel measurements within the document, but I would suggest that the students merely measure each pizza on-screen.) Students will be asked to calculate the price/per/topping and determine whether this price is "fair".

Time: One class period (at least 45 minutes)

Procedure: Students will "search" the pizza servers home page. They will need some time to experiments with various pizza toppings, and to read the directions on navigating through the steps. The directions are very well written. There is considerable text, so be sure to give the students enough time to read the material. Students will be asked several questions regarding their research, and they will be asked to calculate various costs regarding the pizza selections. I strongly recommend that their answers be supported with explanations on "how" they determined their answers. The students begin by going to this URL:

* Note that this link contains access to sites that are open for free responses. Close supervision should be maintained by the facilitator.

 Problems and Questions: (answers for some of the problems depend on individual screen size.  All support work should be included with your calculations.)

1. Order a small, medium, large and family size pizza. Use a metric ruler and measure the diameter in centimeters of a small, medium, large, and family size pizza. Calculate the area for each size pizza. Record this data.

2. What is the "base" price (without any toppings) of a small, medium, large, and family size pizza?

3. Calculate the price per topping. (Does this price change in relationship to the size of the pizza? How does this compare to real life?

4. What size pizza, containing two toppings is the better buy? Explain your answer algebraically and support with a explanatory paragraph.

5. What is the most expensive pizza that can be ordered? How did you determine your answer? How much would this same pizza cost if the only thing changed was the size to small?

6. What was your favorite topping?

7. When was this pizza page developed and what format was used? When did it get posted on the World Wide Web?

8. How do you pay for pizza? What is the conversion rate between various countries. (Give at least two examples).

Please note:  My students should include a copy of the pizza they "ordered".  This must be printed from the Pizza Server Home Page.  You may do your calculations from the printed page if you choose.

Gender Issues: Girls and boys should be entertained by the built-in humor found in the Internet Pizza Server. Try putting the students in like sex groups. It would be interesting to compare their "favorite" pizzas and discuss.

Students' Bonus:Write 2-3 other questions that could be included in this lesson. Include the answers to the questions, and the URL you used to determine the answers.
Good luck with your project! Ms. Boone :)


Thanks: I would like to personally thank atman@ecst.csuchico.edu and beej@ecst.csuchico.edu for maintaining such an interesting site. I had fun!

Suggestions/Comments: email Susan Boone sboone@cs.rice.edu

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These pages were developed through GirlTECH, a teacher training sponsored by the Center for Research on Parallel Computation (CRPC), a National Science Foundation Science and Technology Center.
Thanks to the RGK Foundation and EOT-PACI for its generous support of GirlTECH.
Copyright June,1995 Susan Boone