How a beer teaches differential equations


Ismael Fayos, Universitat Jaume I, Castelló, Spain


We present a methodological proposal of a Study and Research Path (SRP) design, based on the Paradigm of Questioning the World (PQW) and inspired by the methodology for the design of mathematical modeling-based didactic activities (Macias and Romo, 2014), which seeks to relate differential equations with motivating extra-mathematical contexts that allow to investigate Newton’s Law of Cooling.

By investigating the time it takes for a beer to warm up in summer, the aim of this SRP is to enable students to investigate Newton’s law of cooling (also including variation of the parameters, and other questions that are not directly answered by the plain ODE solution).

Self-intro of the speaker:

I am a university lecturer in mathematics didactics at the Jaume I University in Castelló (Spain), but I have been, for 20 years, a secondary school mathematics teacher.  My research focuses on the didactics of mathematics, and in archetype analysis (an unsupervised statistical analysis), which was the subject of my PhD.