Monday, February 29, 2016

Math Monday: Pi Day

Happy Math Monday!
This month the Math Mondays Blog Hop is all about Pi Day.
I love Pi Day!  Last year was the ultimate Pi Day, but I have already seen t-shirts and signs that refer to “rounding up” this Pi Day. 3.14.16!  ;)

I have 4 ideas to share that will make your Pi Day a blast!

1 Invest in “pi pencils”
A few years ago, my colleague and I invested in a few boxes of pi pencils.  Purchase them on Amazon here.
They make a great little gift for your math students or use them as prizes.

2 Want to be “Pi-lingual”?
I invested in this amazing resource from MissMathDork.  Inform your students all about pi in a fun, interactive way.

3 Tell a corny joke
Now you can go all out like I love to tell jokes with a colleague over the loudspeaker during morning announcements.  Or if that’s not really your style just share a corny joke with your students or write it on the front board.
“What do you get when you divide the circumference of a jack o’lantern by its diameter?  Pumpkin Pi!”

4 Engage students in some Pi Day trivia
I love to ask my students some neat trivia questions.  Did you know Albert Einstein was born on Pi Day in 1879?

Click the image below to browse some other awesome Pi Day resources!

Check out the links below to read posts by other amazing secondary math teachers!

Monday, February 15, 2016

Mathemagic Monday #1: Complementary v. Supplementary

Recently I was reviewing complementary versus supplementary with my eighth graders.  Here are three tricks to help students recall the difference between the two:

I would like to begin a new series of blog posts that I will call Mathemagic Mondays.  When I reflect on why I have always loved mathematics, the first answer that always comes to mind is because it is fun.  Well, what makes it fun?

·      Making connections to real life
·      Learning through games
·      Establishing connections between ideas… the “aha” moments
·      Understanding shortcuts

My students who “don’t like math,” are usually the ones who don’t recognize patterns and shortcuts.  They know the steps (maybe), they follow them, but they don’t know why.  As teachers, sometimes we forget to share the shortcuts and tricks we know.  Or maybe sometimes we think they shouldn’t use them because it isn’t the “right” way or it might confuse students more.  Let's share the mathemagic!

In this series, I am going to share some of the tips and tricks I have successfully shared with my students.  I would love, love your input and ideas!  Email me at with your own tips and tricks and I will credit you in a blog post.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my blog via email so that you are notified about new posts.  J

Recently I was reviewing complementary versus supplementary with my eighth graders.  Here are three tricks to help students recall the difference between the two:
1)      Alphabetical/Numerical Order: C comes before S and 90 comes before 180 so complementary angles are 90 degrees and supplementary angles are 180 degrees.

2)    Visual Changes: C can easily be turned into a 9 for 90 and S can easily be turned into an 8 for 180.

3)    A Friendly Saying: “Complimenting someone is the RIGHT thing to do.”  Therefore, complementary angles are angles that together make 90 degrees.

Post your own strategies in the comment section below!

Stop by my store and pick up this angles puzzle freebie!

Mathemagic Monday is a series of blog posts by Free to Discover that highlights some tips and tricks for making math meaningful and fun for kids, focusing on those shortcuts and connections that give us the “aha” moment.