All posts by Joe Champion

Ultimate Toothpick Pattern

Meeting Summary

We met to talk about a very simple, but really interesting, new pattern that can be created in the following way.

  1. Start with a single toothpick
  2. Add another toothpick at a right angle to each of the pointy-ends of the pattern
  3. If two toothpicks, meet at  their pointy-ends, don’t add toothpicks to the place they meet.

We started with actual toothpicks, and eventually started to see a neat pattern emerging. And then, things got all mathematical! Continue reading Ultimate Toothpick Pattern

Boise Math Teacher Circle Summer Workshop

Agenda

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

  • 8:00 – 9:30         Problem Solving Part 1 (Strategies, 10 Problems, 2 Problems)
  • 9:30 – 10:00      Break
  • 10:00 – 11:30   Launch + Arithmetic Fun (Overview, Slides)
  • 11:30 – 1:00      Lunch (bored?)
  • 1:00 – 2:30         Polygons on a Sphere (handout)
  • 2:30 – 3:00         Break
  • 3:00 – 4:00         Who is a Mathematician?

Thursday,  July 30, 2015

  • 8:00 – 9:00        Prep for Field Trip (Arches, Bubbles, Waves, Calculator)
  • 9:00 – 9:15        Break
  • 9:15 – 11:30     Field trip to the Discovery Center
  • 11:30 – 1:00     Lunch
  • 1:00 – 2:30        Iteration (handout)
  • 2:30 – 3:00        Break
  • 3:00 – 4:00        Sona Drawings (handout)

Friday,  July 31, 2015

  • 8:00 – 9:30          Problem Solving Part 2
  • 9:30 – 10:00       Break
  • 10:00 – 11:30    Dimensions (handout)
  • 11:30 – 1:00       Lunch
  • 1:00 – 2:30          Sharing Resources
  • 2:30 – 3:00          Break
  • 3:00 – 4:00          Math Games (handout)

Three Point One Four Something

March 14, 2015 was an auspicious date to have a ‘math circle’ meeting.  We ate some great dessert, and worked on some really interesting questions like:

  • How exactly can you approximate $\pi$ using regular polygons using just the Pythagorean Theorem?
  • What does it mean to find a ‘best rational approximation’ of a number?
  • How do you calculate continued fractions?
  • What are some continued fractions of popular irrational numbers?
  • What might be some ways to prove an infinitude continued fraction equals a specific irrational number?

Handouts

Now Recruiting for Spring 2015

The Department of Mathematics at Boise State University is excited to announce we’ll be continuing the Boise Math Circle sessions during Spring 2015.

The program directors have extended invitations to Fall 2014 participants to continue, and are also recruiting new participants. If you or someone you know likes solving problems and wants to learn more about the creative side of math, please consider applying.

Teachers

Please help us recruit participants by letting your students know about the program. If you’d like attendance reports for your students (e.g., for extra credit) , please send us an email. You’re of course welcome to join the sessions.