Lunch at the White House. Image © Iragena Serge Bangamwabo
As I mentioned in my last post, five of our students were invited to the White House Science Fair.
Here are a few news articles about them:
In front of their display board, inside the White House. Image © Iragena Serge Bangamwabo
Tune in to the White House Science Fair if you get the chance today: http://www.whitehouse.gov/science-fair
Five of my students will be there, showcasing their Solar-Powered Toy Hovercraft that they designed and created last year. Their project won first place in the Constellation Energy Challenge last spring, which was a collaboration between NFTE (Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship) and Maryland MESA (Math, Engineering, and Science Achievement), to have students design a product using alternative energy, engineer a working prototype of that product, and create a business plan for marketing the product to consumers. Thanks and credit also go to my amazing colleague who also advised them, and to two Morgan State University engineering students who mentored the team on their project.
A video of an early prototype (not yet using solar energy) can be found here.
The students did an amazing job with both their project and their presentation of it to a panel of judges last May, and received a special invitation earlier this month to be a part of President Obama’s annual White House Science Fair.
In addition to this invitation to the White House being tribute to the creativity, talent, and teamwork of the specific students, I think this team of five students, born in five different countries, also represents the great potential of my school’s (and America’s) diversity to create learning experiences and spark innovation. As well as providing a counter-narrative to the usual news of only bad things happening in Baltimore City Schools.
Wish them luck, and watch along!
Very awesome trip last week. The Baltimore chapter of the Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS) took the students who have been participating all year in WTS’s Transportation You mentoring program to the airport!
Transportation You is all about increasing the number of girls interested in transportation, engineering, and other STEM careers. At Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) we learned about aviation, the infrastructure of the airport itself, and some of the jobs performed by women in those areas.
Introductions at BWI
Of course, I knew it was going to be a great trip when we walked in and saw all these trusses in the ceiling!
Trusses Trusses Everywhere!
Among many interesting parts of the visit, they took us up to the Operations Control room.
The Operations Control Center!
And then out onto the roof!
View from the Roof of BWI
A fun day it was!
Once again, Pi Day has arrived!
As you probably know, pi (π) is a mathematical constant found in circles and throughout mathematics! Since pi’s decimal expansion starts off 3.14…, and today’s date is 3/14, we celebrate pi and all things mathematical on this day!
3.141592653589793238462643383279…, to be a bit more precise! Image copyright David Reimannn, found here
My Top Pi Ways to Celebrate Pi Day
1. Share pi (and pie) with friends
2. Read and learn more about pi
3. Contemplate the wonder of the universe and mathematics’ role within it
.14159…. Shout “Happy Pi Day!” and/or “Happy Pi Moment” at the top of your lungs when the appropriate time occurs
Pieces of Pi
Related to #1 and #2 above, here are a few cool tidbits about pi and pi day:
- Check out this piem, that is, a poem where the number of letters in each word yields the sequence of pi’s digits. Though I’ve discussed several of these before (most notably, Poe, E. Near a Raven), I had not run across this century-old piem before this week!
- Relatedly, here’s a statistical analysis on the probability of writing piems or other pilish phrases by accident!
- If you’re a fan of mathematical art, check out this Numberphile video explaining some of the art I’ve featured in today’s post, and also this gallery of mathy art from this winter’s Joint Mathematics Meetings in Baltimore!
- Challenge yourself with some pi sudoku puzzles from Brainfreeze from years past! Or with the online Pi Day Challenge!
- Listen to a new recording of the sound of pi (this one uses pi in base 12 to match up with the chromatic scale)!
- Read this article about pi’s normality (whether each digit or combination of digits appears equally in the decimal expansion of pi) from this month’s American Mathematical Monthly!
- Today I had my students throw toothpicks at some lines (the Buffon’s Needle experiment, described here and here; the connection to pi is explained here). Fun!
- Some other ways to celebrate can be found in my (Pi Day – 2) post here!
- Thanks to the math department at my alma mater, Williams College, for featuring this post on their website!
I cannot believe it’s been 10 years since my first pi day expansive email that set up (or continued) a crazy propaganda war between the mathematical constants pi and e. (Going back even further, by my count I’ve been celebrating pi day in some form or another for almost 18 years now!) Just about each year since 2004 I have sent out my annual missive on Pi Day, by email and/or by blog (a few years when March was especially busy for me, I sent out messages on other pi-related days). A list can be found in yesterday’s pre-pi-day post here.
Have a great Pi Day today, and many more!
3.13 – that’s nothing special – but it’s almost Pi Day!
In case you can’t read it, it says “Plenty of Pi to go around” and has digits of pi arranged in a circle around the outside! Image and pie by Pippi, from this website.
Enjoy this picture of a pi pie, and get ready for tomorrow’s celebration!
To tide you over, here are some of my past posts concerning pi:
As you know, Pi Day is nigh! This Friday, March 14th (3/14), is the great and glorious day of pi (π=3.14…)!
Not sure what to do on Pi Day?
Here’s a pi day pi chart to help!
A pi Day Pie Chart of activities, from this website – click the picture to make bigger
Plan your pi parties now!
It’s approximately pi days until Pi Day here on the east coast (i.e. a little more than three days)!
Pumpkin Pi image (found here)
I leave you for today with a little quip I just thought of, written in pilish (count the number of letters in each word):
Day o’ math I await: celebrate pi!