Before you begin
For males, the formula for resting metabolic rate is RMR = 4.5w
+ 5, where w
represents weight in pounds, h
represents height in inches, and a
represents age in years. (The formula is slightly different for women.) While this formula is by no means overly complicated, it would be helpful if students were already familiar with substituting values and evaluating expressions.
Note: Approximately 1 in 3 American children are overweight or obese, while many others struggle with eating disorders. To avoid insecurities, teasing, etc., the lesson does not ask students to calculate their own caloric intake. Instead, it does its best to treat the human body as fundamentally no different than a car or any other machine: something that requires fuel to burn. The goal is for students not only to understand the math behind eating and exercise, but also to remove some of the stigma behind it. Still, before beginning the lesson, you might remind students that this is a sensitive topic for millions of people across the country, and that you expect their behavior to demonstrate understanding and empathy.