The Talking Stick Blog

News, Updates, Program Recaps, and Homeschooling Information

Getting Emotional about Pi

(February 25, 2014)  Kids arrived to see some yarn and 3 different-sized cans on the table:  salt, coffee, and espresso.  I asked the kids to point out the key parts of a circle on the cans – the circumference, the area, the (invisible) center, and the rope/radius,1  and the diameter.  We hadn’t worked with diameter before, so we talked about…

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Math Circle Topics, Math Advice, and Math Lawyer

Should we require kids to produce math facts on demand? What does it mean that something is “true,” “valid,” or “proven?” (Hint: they do not mean the same thing.) And upon what fundamental system is arithmetic based? (I’ll just tell you: place value.) These are the big questions that will drive our Math Circles this year. More specifically, ages 11…

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Thinking Like Mathematicians

The kind of real mathematical thinking that a math circle encourages.   Photos of a Julia Set crop circle and a Cissbury Ring crop circle whetted our appetites for circles this week. Everyone had many questions about how the crop circles got there, particularly how they got to be “so perfect.” Then the kids wanted to continue the process of…

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The Point, the Death of Galileo, and a Singing Bowl

People enjoy math from many different pathways.   “I worked on my Flower of Life at home,” said Z as the students entered the room. As she showed me her work, the others began to draw compass designs long before our circle officially began. I unwrapped a tantalizingly mysterious object, and asked for surmises on its identity. When G guessed…

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