Math = Love: Math + Art = A Beautiful Thing

Monday, March 10, 2014

Math + Art = A Beautiful Thing

Happy Monday!

After over thirteen hours at school today, I'm happy that Monday is almost over!  We had parent/teacher conferences this evening from 3:30-6:30, and we'll do the same tomorrow night.  That makes for a very long day, but I guess we do get out of school on Friday to make up for it.  Of course, that means my Pi Day celebration has been thrown off once again.  One day, I will actually celebrate Pi Day with my students on Pi Day!  

Spring Break is coming, though!  3 more days.  1 blood drive.  1 more night of parent/teacher conferences.  1 STEM Day Engineering and Math Contest.  Yup.  It's going to be a busy, busy week!  I guess it will just make Spring Break that much more sweet...

My New Desk Decoration - Pencil (or Highlighter) Holder
In other news, I got a new desk decoration that I haven't been able to take my eyes off of today.  It's beautiful, it's mathematical, and it's courtesy of my amazing, artistic sister.  She made this last semester as one of her pottery projects.  Then, she fired it and glazed it.  I LOVE it!  It fits my personality perfectly.  And, it definitely reminds me of Frankoma Pottery.

Each of the four sides features a different mathematical symbol.

The Imaginary Number, i
Today, I had a student stay to complete some missing assignments during parent/teacher conference time.  This student's sister, a 7th grader, was stuck in my room for 2+ hours.  She looked at all my posters, played with my various mathematical toys, and spent a good chunk of time trying to solve my Rubik's cube.  One of the first thing that caught her eye was my new pencil/highlighter holder.  Oooh!  That's the pi symbol.  And, it has a square root symbol on this side.  And, this means infinity.  Then, she got to the side featuring i.  What is this?  Her brother quickly piped up that i is the square root of negative one.  I could see the wheels inside her head turning as she tried to figure out the square root of negative one.  That's negative one, right?  What's negative one times negative one?  Positive one.  So, that means negative one cannot be the square root of negative one.  The next thing I know, her brother and I are discussing where i would be on the number line.  These are the types of conversations that I LOVE!  

Pi Symbol
We discussed the number pi and how it goes on forever.  I have issued a challenge to my students to memorize as many digits of pi as possible for our early Pi Day celebration on Wednesday.  Today, I handed out slips of paper to my students with the first 1000 digits of pi.  One student immediately asked, "Where's the pattern?"  There is no pattern.  Pi never repeats.  That's why it's irrational.  "Oh man!  That was how I was going to win.  I was just going to memorize up until the point that it started repeating..."  

A Radical Symbol
 Art that sparks mathematical conversations?  Yeah, I'll take that any day!

Infinity Symbol


  1. Truly, those pottery vases are beautiful. They're unique and very practical. Would love to have one of those in my work desk. - Layce of

    1. I'll share your sweet comment with my sister!