Ramesh Kumar thinks math makes a person cool and smart. It’s highly creative, full of fun, logical, and based on reasoning. Many people consider math as nothing more than rote, tedious number crunching, plugging numbers into a formula that they cannot memorize, but it can be beautiful once you understand it. The beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.
One of the best parts of Thanksgiving is that every family has its own traditions and treats. But most tables across the country sport a pile of mashed potatoes. The great thing about creamed spuds is that you and your kid can play around with them before smashing them, because it doesn’t matter if they get bruised –less work to do later!
As I was pondering Thanksgiving desserts beyond pie and beyond pi (because we should have more than 3 options for such a bountiful meal), I realized that with a few tweaks, I could turn a favorite Chanukah treat into a new Thanksgiving tradition. This is fitting given the unusual overlap between the two holidays. Thus, my edible marshmallow dreidels are now edible acorns. The faux acorns resemble spinning tops, so I suppose they can double for dreidels on this double holiday.
My kids have way too many stuffed animals. It seems like those fuzzy critters multiply overnight. Admittedly, I have a hard time turning away new little friends as most of them come with a special memory. Sometimes I practically get misty looking at my boys’ collection, but an instant later I snap out of it and see a pile of animals just sitting there and collecting dust. Can you relate? Don’t despair, put those cuddly creatures to work with a stuffed animal party at your house.
The countdown to the big Thanksgiving meal (or maybe the crazy day of shopping that follows) has begun! There’s actually a lot of math that takes place around this meal-driven holiday- how many guests are coming? How many chairs do we need to borrow in order for everyone to have a seat at the table and can you comfortably squeeze a dozen people around a table designed for eight? And of course that persistent question from the kids, when do we eat?
As a young engineer, Debbie Sterling set out to solve some of society’s big challenges. Now she’s building a special bridge, one that connects girls with a future in engineering. With the help of a wildly successful crowdsourcing campaign she launched GoldieBlox in 2012. Goldieblox provides a much-needed female engineer role model who help s girls develop their spatial skills and build self-confidence in their problem solving abilities.
Years ago people used their bodies, rather than rulers and yardsticks, to measure length and distance. And while using the body does sound practical (You don’t have to hunt for your head or your foot like you do a misplaced ruler.), it can get pretty difficult. Add this to the fact that your foot is unlikely to be the same length as your neighbor’s, and you’ll see why the body isn’t so great for accurate measurements and comparisons. Here are some interesting facts about the history of measurement and a few fun activities to try:
It’s that time of year. Just hours after my family returned home from apple picking a friend dropped off a five-gallon bucket of freshly picked apples. I was knee deep in apples! Wanting to make the most of nature’s bounty, I scoured the internet in search of new apple recipes. Ultimately, I found baked apple chips. Baked apple chips are easy to make, satisfying to crunch and offer a couple of cool math insights, as well as a secret surprise.
The larger a family gets, the harder it is to find a meal that everyone actually likes. Fortunately, a family can always agree on pizza. Pizza is the great peacemaker, and it can also be a great piece-maker, a delicious way for kids to practice fractions (and learn some valuable cooking skills). Of course, if you’re crunched for time you can pick one up from your favorite spot, but baking your own is sure to create more fun, and more memories, with your kids.
Dr. Leonisa Ardizzone, Ed.D. Founder and President of Storefront Science in New York City, shares Five Thoughts about Math. As creative and seasoned science educator, she has solid ideas for all parents as well as food for thought for those raising girls.