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March 14 (3/14) is celebrated as Pi Day since pi is approximately 3.14, and of course is the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter - or of a pie's circumference to its diameter, for that matter! Pi is an irrational number, with an infinitely long string of digits, and over 10 trillion of those have been determined (the first ten are 3.141592653..).
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Thanks for sharing. I had not heard of this before, but is certainly makes sense. I have shared with several other teachers via email.
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I had not heard of pi day until recently and will be celebrating it this year with my math class. There is a wide range of activities online and I am excited to try some of them. Even young students could be introduced to pi and there are lots of activities to challenge older students as well. I have looked into a lot of different activities but don't know what would be best to try. I would love to hear about activities that others have done and how they went.
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Thanks for reminding us about pi day ( not as big as Mole day) but fun none the less. The last time I shared this celebration was with a magnet school in D.C. and the kids designed and sold sweat shirts and made pies to sell to earn money to go to their very first robotics contest. It was fun and constructive for all involved.
p.s. the tees were sold before March 14th so that the students could wear them to school in lieu of the required dress code;}
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Hi Pam and other thread participants,
I thought someone might be interested in a lesson that has students discovering "Pi" for themselves. I love this lesson:
Verifying Vexing Volumes: “Can Be as Easy as Pi” Mathematics for Pi Day :-)
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This reminds me of an activity that I had often used in early days of class when talking about significant figures, measurement, and the meaning of slopes. Students would measure the radius and the circumference of a variety of tin cans, and other round things stored in a box. Each group would select 6 different items from the box and use metric rulers, string, and simple plastic calipers to gather data. They then would graph Circumference vs. Radius on a graph (by hand- no electronic graphing programs allowed yet) and then think about the meaning of the slope of the best fit line. This led into statistics and variation as well as good graphing techniques. Finally, having discovered the relationship between pi and the slope, they would determining their percent accuracy using 3.14 as an acceptable value for pi. It was a nice and easy first days activity that set the stage for lots of future work in measuring and gathering data accurately. Unfortunately, I rarely baked pies for them as treats.
Thanks for your post which reminded me of this activity.
The movie "life of Pi" follows a boy who was fascinated by math and continuously solving the equation and therefore, he became the 'Pi' man. If you are interested in showing a movie clip of someone showing the ever ending Pi, I would suggest a small part of this movie.
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Thank you for sharing. I am currently a student studying to be an elementary education teacher. I performed a KWL chart on Pi Day in the sixth grade math classroom I'm currently observing in. We filled out the "K" and the "W" part of the chart prior to reading Sir Cumference and the Dragon of Pi and then filled out the "L" part of the chart after reading. The book is a fun math adventure to help students understand Pi, however, it is a fictional book so I was sure to address what was fictional and what was factual.
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This is a great idea and something I had not thought about before! I am bummed that 3/14 has already passed as I would have really liked to have done some fun activities. Thanks for sharing.
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