MathsClass

A blog about teaching and learning in a maths classroom.

What if the largest states of Australia had the biggest populations?

Saturday, 04 December 2010 | 2 Comments

You might have seen this map featured around the place recently:

What if the largest countries had the biggest populations?

So I wondered, what if the largest countries had the biggest populations?

 

The map is interesting, and I wondered how we could complete an activity like this in class.  So, a more achievable activity is to map a similar map for Australia.  That is, What if the largest states of Australia had the biggest populations?

Conveniently, Wikipedia has the data required in one easy spot: States and territories of Australia.
Geoscience Australia has a Outline map of Australia.

The worksheet below provides a scaffold for students to complete the activity.

Here’s the answer:

                                                                                                                   
StateArea (km2)PopulationState
Western Australia25298756967200New South Wales
Queensland17306485297600Victoria
Northern Territory13491294279400Queensland
South Australia9834822163200Western Australia
New South Wales8006421601800South Australia
Victoria227416500001Tasmania
Tasmania68401344200Australian Capital Territory
Australian Capital Territory2358219900Northern Territory

Map of Australia with biggest populations moved to biggest states

Update See also some extension ideas from Joshua Harnwell on maths.net.au.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License (?).

Posted in • ActivityLesson IdeaNumberMediaDiagramPrintableWorksheet | Short URL: http://mths.co/2055

Comments

Liz Hemmings on  04 December 10  at  08:00 AM #
I like this activity simon, one that makes them think and also makes area a little more meaningful. Will try and do this before end of the year - even though I am not doing this topic it could be good as a one of interest lesson in the lab with year 7.
Nordin Zuber on  18 December 10  at  04:52 AM #
What would be great is if we had an easy tool to redraw the internal borders to preserve the positions of the states, but shrink or grow them so their areas are proportionate to their population size. I wonder what tool might do that ... perhaps put them on a grid somehow and have a way to count the squares?

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Simon Job — eleventh year of teaching maths in a public high school in Western Sydney, Australia.
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