**Please Note:** We need volunteers to host future carnivals! See below for more information.

If you are a homeschooler or classroom teacher, student or independent learner, or anyone else who writes about math, now is the time to send in your favorite blog post for next week’s *Math Teachers at Play* (MTaP) math education blog carnival.

- Click here to submit your blog post.
- Browse all the past editions of the
*Math Teachers at Play*blog carnival

Have you noticed a new math blogger on your block that you’d like to introduce to the rest of us? Feel free to submit another blogger’s post in addition to your own. Beginning bloggers are often shy about sharing, but like all of us, they love finding new readers.

**Don’t procrastinate:** *The deadline for entries is this Friday, March 20.* The carnival will be posted next week at Math Hombre.

**Click to tweet about the carnival.**

(No spam, I promise! You will have a chance to edit or cancel the tweet.)

If you haven’t written anything about math lately, here are some ideas to get your creative juices flowing…

**Elementary Concepts:**As Liping Ma showed, there is more to understanding and teaching elementary mathematics than we often realize. Do you have a game, activity, or anecdote about teaching math to young students? Please share!**Arithmetic/Pre-Algebra:**This section is for arithmetic lessons and number theory puzzles at the middle-school-and-beyond level. We would love to hear your favorite math club games, numerical investigations, or contest-preparation tips.**Beginning Algebra and Geometry:**Can you explain why we never divide by zero, how to bisect an angle, or what is wrong with distributing the square in the expression ? Struggling students need your help! Share your wisdom about basic algebra and geometry topics here.**Advanced Math:**Like most adults, I have forgotten enough math to fill several textbooks. I’m eager to learn again, but math books can be so-o-o tedious. Can you make upper-level math topics come alive, so they will stick in my (or a student’s) mind?**Mathematical Recreations:**What kind of math do you do, just for the fun of it?**About Teaching Math:**Other teachers’ blogs are an important factor in my continuing education. The more I read about the theory and practice of teaching math, the more I realize how much I have yet to learn. So please, fellow teachers, don’t be shy — share your insights!

We need more hosts! Hosting the blog carnival can be a lot of work, but it’s fun to “meet” new bloggers through their submissions. And there’s a side-benefit: The carnival usually brings a nice little spike in traffic to your blog.

If you think you’d like to join in the fun, read the instructions on our Math Teachers at Play page. Then leave a comment or email me to let me know which month you’d like to take.

While you’re waiting for next week’s *Math Teachers at Play* carnival, you may enjoy:

- Last month’s Math(s) Teachers at Play – 83rd Edition
- Carnival of Mathematics
- Carnaval de Matemáticas

Get monthly math tips and activity ideas, and be the first to hear about new books, revisions, and sales or other promotions. Sign up for my Tabletop Academy Press Updates email list.

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Get monthly math tips and activity ideas, and be the first to hear about new books, revisions, and sales or other promotions. Sign up for my Tabletop Academy Press Updates email list.

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- the Happy Birthday, Einstein! video series
- Happy Birthday, Einstein (Part 2)
- Happy Birthday, Einstein (Part 3)
- Happy Birthday, Einstein (Part 4)
- Albert Einstein’s math biography
- Math-related quotes from Albert Einstein

Get monthly math tips and activity ideas, and be the first to hear about new books, revisions, and sales or other promotions. Sign up for my Tabletop Academy Press Updates email list.

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An extra note from Dr. Grime: “Since pi39 ends in 0, you may think we could use pi38 instead, which has even fewer digits. Unfortunately, the rounding errors of pi38 are ten times larger than the rounding errors of pi39 — more than a hydrogen atom. So that extra decimal place makes a difference, even if it’s 0.”

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Do you have a favorite family activity for celebrating Pi Day? I’d love to hear it!

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Unending digits …

Why not keep it simple, like

Twenty-two sevenths?—Luke Anderson

Encourage your students to make their own Pi Day haiku with these tips from *Mr. L’s Math*:

And remember, Pi Day is also Albert Einstein’s birthday! Check out this series of short videos about his life and work: Happy Birthday, Einstein.

Wednesday Wisdom features a quote to inspire my fellow homeschoolers and math education peeps. Today’s quote is from Luke Anderson, via TeachPi.org. Background photo courtesy of Robert Couse-Baker (CC BY 2.0) via Flickr.

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Hat tip: Singing Banana.

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After posting this video, Dr. Grimes and Lawrence Roberts began collecting and analyzing data about real-world rivers. It turns out the pi theory of sinuosity is too simple. Read about their results:

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Pi Day is coming soon. Maybe you’d like to try a pi project with your family? Check out my Pi Day Roundup of links.

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Did you notice the error? It was supposed to be “a”…

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*[Photo by Steve Bowbrick. (CC BY 2.0 via Flickr)]*

Hello, and welcome to the 83rd Edition of the monthly blog carnival “Math(s) Teachers at Play”.

It is traditional to start with some number facts around the edition number, 83 is pretty cool, as it happens. Its prime, which sets it apart from all those lesser compound numbers. Not only that, its a safe prime, a Chen prime and even a Sophie Germain prime, you can’t get much cool than that can you? Well yes, yes you can, because 83 is also an Eisenstein prime!!!!

Those of you who work in base 36 will know it for its famous appearance in Shakespeare’s Hamlet: “83, or not 83, that is the question…..”

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Teachers and other math nerds are preparing to celebrate an epic Pi Day on 3/14/15. Unfortunately, the activities I see on teacher blogs and Pinterest don’t include much actual math. They stress the pi/pie wordplay or memorizing the digits.

With a bit of digging, however, I found a couple of projects that let you sink your metaphorical teeth into real mathematical meat. So I put those in the March “Let’s Play Math” newsletter, which went out this morning to everyone who signed up for Tabletop Academy Press math updates.

If you’re not on the mailing list, you can still join in the fun:

Math Snack: Why Pi?In math, symmetry is beautiful, and the most completely symmetric object in the (Euclidean) mathematical plane is the circle. No matter how you turn it, expand it, or shrink it, the circle remains essentially the same. Every circle you can imagine is the exact image of every other circle there is.

This is not true of other shapes. A rectangle may be short or tall. An ellipse may be fat or slim. A triangle may be squat, or stand up right, or lean off at a drunken angle. But circles are all the same, except for magnification. A circle three inches across is a perfect, point-for-point copy of a circle three miles across, or three millimeters…

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Note to Readers:Please help me improve this list! Add your suggestions or additions in the comment section below…

What does it mean to think like a mathematician? From the very beginning of my education, I can do these things to some degree. And I am always learning to do them better.

- I always think about what a math problem means. I consider how the numbers are related, and I imagine what the answer might look like.
- I remember similar problems I’ve done before. Or I make up similar problems with smaller numbers or simpler shapes, to see how they work.
- I often use a drawing or sketch to help me think about a problem. Sometimes I even build a physical model of the situation.
- I like to compare my approach to the problem with other people and hear how they did it differently.

- I know how numbers relate to each other.
- I’m flexible with mental math. I understand arithmetic properties and can use them to make calculations easier.
- I’m not intimidated by algebra symbols.
- I don’t rely on memorized rules unless I know why they make sense.

- I can recognize assumptions and definitions of math terms.
- I argue logically, giving reasons for my statements and justifying my conclusion.
- I listen to and understand other people’s explanations.
- I ask questions to clarify things I don’t understand.

- I recognize joining, separating, comparing, and sorting situations and can describe them with mathematical expressions or equations using addition or subtractions.
- I recognize proportional, grouping, or sharing situations and can describe them with mathematical expressions or equations using multiplication or division, or with fractions.
- In algebra or geometry, I know how to recognize typical function or shape relationships.
- I can make assumptions or approximations to simplify a complex situation.
- I always ask myself, “Does this make sense?” and try to make my mathematical models better.

- I can make a chart, graph, data table, or diagram.
- I can use a ruler, protractor, or compass.
- I know how to use a calculator when I need it. I never copy down all the digits on my calculator, but round numbers to the appropriate degree of precision.
- I like to experiment with online graphing tools.
- I know how to look up information online and how to recognize a trustworthy website.

- I know how important it is to define my words and symbols.
- I don’t misuse the equal sign.
- I’m careful about units of measurement.
- I label my graphs and diagrams.

- I know that patterns can make math easier to work with.
- I use common number patterns to simplify arithmetic calculations.
- I use common algebra patterns to simplify equations.
- I use common shape patterns to simplify geometric and trigonometric puzzles.

- If I see a new pattern, I don’t automatically trust it. I always ask, “Does it make sense?”
- I ask myself, “Will the pattern always work? Or does it only work in special cases?”
- I look for ways to explain the pattern in general terms.
- When I find a true general pattern, I use it to help me solve new problems.

[Based on the Standards for Mathematical Practice, translated into conversational English.]

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Only dead mathematics can be taught where competition prevails: living mathematics must always be a communal possession.

— Mary Everest Boole

Wednesday Wisdom features a quote to inspire my fellow homeschoolers and math education peeps. Today’s quote is from Mary Everest Boole. Background photo courtesy of State Library of Queensland, Australia (no known copyright) via Flickr.

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*[Photo by Olga Berrios (CC BY 2.0) via Flickr.]*

Do you have a favorite blog post about math activities, games, lessons, or hands-on fun? The *Math Teachers at Play* (MTaP) math education blog carnival would love to feature your article!

We welcome math topics from preschool through the first year of calculus. Old posts are welcome, as long as they haven’t been published in past editions of this carnival.

- Click here to submit your blog post.
- Browse all the past editions of the
*Math Teachers at Play*blog carnival

Have you noticed a new math blogger on your block that you’d like to introduce to the rest of us? Feel free to submit another blogger’s post in addition to your own. Beginning bloggers are often shy about sharing, but like all of us, they love finding new readers.

**Don’t procrastinate:** *The deadline for entries is this Friday, February 20.* The carnival will be posted next week at CavMaths.

**Click to tweet about the carnival.**

(No spam, I promise! You will have a chance to edit or cancel the tweet.)

Hosting the blog carnival is fun because you get to “meet” new bloggers through their submissions. And there’s a side-benefit: The carnival often brings a nice little spike in traffic to your blog. If you think you’d like to join in the fun, read the instructions on our Math Teachers at Play page. Then leave a comment or email me to let me know which month you’d like to take.

While you’re waiting for next week’s *Math Teachers at Play* carnival, you may enjoy:

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