Wild About Math! Making Math fun and accessible

17Mar/110

Wild About Math bloggers 3/11/11

Welcome to the 3/11/11 edition of Wild About Math Bloggers!

The Mathematics and Multimedia Carnival #8 is up at DavidWees.com.

If you happen to be in the Santa Fe area, or know of someone who is, check out my Math Exploration Groups (aka Math Circle). I have one coming up Wednesday.

Salman Khan, founder of the Khan Academy, has a very inspiring TED video. His non-profit's ideas and software could revolutionize Math education, although I'm not a fan of doing lots of drills.

Mr. Sweeney has a clever Math exploration. He has kids use Geogebra to figure out if a bird's trajectory will hit a pig in the wildly popular Angry Birds game.

Angry Birds is a pretty popular game with the kids nowadays. My students brought up the game when we started talking about parabolas and I've been working on a way to bring that connection into a class. So, I created a lesson using GeoGebra and some screenshots from Angry Birds mixed in with some inspiration from Dan's Will The Ball Hit The Can?
. . .
Using GeoGebra, students worked in groups of 2 on their laptops to place points onto the bird's trail as accurately as possible to create a quadratic models in order to decide if the bird would score a direct hit on any of the pigs. If you had 4 points labeled A-D, for instance, the GeoGebra command would be FitPoly[A, B, C, D, 2]

Grey Matters has a nice tutorial on computing the day of the week for any date.

Check out this cool video showing something called an "Euler disk."
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ug2bKCG4gZY[/youtube]
Hat tip to Math Fail.

Here's a beautiful quote from Alain Connes in the Princeton Companion to Mathematics:

Where things get really interesting is when unexpected bridges emerge between parts of the mathematical world that were remote from each other in the mental picture that had been developed by previous generation of mathematicians. When this happens, one gets the feeling that a sudden wind has blown away the fog that was hiding parts of a beautiful landscape.

Hat tip to Sue VanHattum.

Finally, here's a joke from Patrick at Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks:

A student was having trouble in math, so his mother decided to hire a tutor. “How much are your sessions?” the mother asked.

“Sixty-five dollars an hour,” the tutor replied.

“That’s quite expensive,” the mother responded. “Is there anything else you can offer?”

“Yes,” said the tutor. “I also offer sessions for $20 an hour… but I don’t recommend them.”

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