Life and Musings of Ed

Archive for the ‘Ed Does Math’ Category

Pi Day 2017

In Ed Does Math, Math Tutor on 13 March 17 at 2:15 pm Pi

From Visually.

Here are a few links to help celebrate Pi-Day, or to simply learn more about Pi : 

Pi Day Organization

Exploratorium – Pi Day – San Francisco, CA

Web Quest

The Joy Of Pi

The Math Forum – Pi


Sequences of Inscribed Polygons

In Ed Does Math, Math Tutor on 8 October 13 at 12:13 pm

Sequences of Inscribed Polygons.

Interesting Blog — just click the link and enjoy as Michael Pershan describes the process of exploring (or noodling –as he says). I too seek to provide students with the joyful experience of really “doing” mathematics, often by challenging them with competition level problems and hoping that they will begin exploring on their own. Keep up the great work, Micheal!

Teaching math through KenKen – Mathematics 24×7

In Ed Does Math on 12 October 10 at 12:07 pm

This was Posted by Jake Schonberger on August 3, 2010 on Mathematics 24×7


KenKen is a new math puzzle, and unlike Sudoku (very similar aesthetically), it employs arithmetic in addition to logic. KenKen was originally created by a Japanese math teacher, who needed a new way of engaging his students.

I have been working to promote the game, mostly to other teachers. has a great teacher program, which provides weekly puzzles to teachers for free throughout the academic year. There has been over 8,000 teachers signed up for this program.

I wonder if any of you have heard of KenKen, and if so, what kind of uses have you found it good for? It is an amazing way of keeping kids engaged.

Here is a picture of a 4×4 KenKen puzzle:

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First Friday Fractals :

In Ed Does Math, Music on 2 February 10 at 3:09 pm

I have always loved the connections between math, art and music. This is an event tailor made for folks with a similar passion. All I need is a full dome projection system, some computing power and my music friends to emmulate what the Fractal Foundation is doing. You should check out for more. Make me smile!

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Teaching About Derivatives

In Ed Does Math, Math Tutor on 13 January 10 at 4:58 pm

I found this fascinating quote today:

Last semester I stumbled upon an approach for teaching the concept of the derivative, and later the integral, that worked surprisingly well with my students. It stems from a realization I had that much of what students see when they first learn about derivatives has very little to do with understanding what a derivative is. The typical approach to introducing the derivative throws students directly into the trickiest possible case: a smooth nonlinear curve, and we want to calculate the slope of a tangent line to this curve at a point. To do this, we have to bring in a lot of “stuff”: average rates of change, tables of sequences of average rates of change, and in a vague and non-rigorous sort of way the notion of a limit. It’s this “stuff” that confuses students — not because it’s hard, but because maybe it’s not suited for their first contact with the idea of the derivative. Maybe we need to build their intuition, Casting Out Nines, Jan 2010

You should read the whole article.A tangent line on a curveImage via Wikipedia

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Ultimate Origami

In Ed Does Math on 18 December 09 at 11:43 am

Ultimate Origami = Origami plus Mathematics

Ted talks scores another hit with me via Robert Lang’s talk on origami.  I have always been fascinated with the connections between art and mathematics; fractal geometry, chaos theory, polyhedron nets, music and sequences, … So — check this out !  Some of my Holiday time will undoubtedly be spent folding 😉

Using Mathematica as a Whiteboard

In Ed Does Math on 1 October 09 at 4:40 pm

This screencast shows users how to use Mathematica as a whiteboard.For more Mathematica screencasts and videos, please visit:…

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Wood Binary Adding Machine

In Ed Does Math on 28 August 09 at 4:39 pm

This is so cool. I love hands on math that this neat video of a wooden binary adding machine represents. My father made me a set of Napier “Bones” which I still cherish and I have used wooden tablets with stone counters for adding Roman Numerals and an abacus just for the tactile experience with mathematics.

Maria – Online math course design

In Ed Does Math, Math Tutor on 27 June 09 at 7:39 am

Maria is a talented math instructor who has got it together with regards to technology and “best practice”.  She is also willing to share her knowledge and work for those willing to listen.  I am one who has benefited from her work and am grateful.  Here is a presentation about online math course design:

[authorSTREAM id= 205652_633813593982923750 pl= player/player by= wyandersen]

Link to presentation here

Also check out Maria’s blog at

Decision Making

In Christian Education, Ed Does Math on 22 May 09 at 8:10 am

Well I have come to really admire the work of Dan Ariely and want to share another of his TED talks. Meta-cognition is a key component of my educational philosophy and a frequent subject of mini-lectures when addressing students who are struggling with grasping a topic or struggling in a particular discipline. So, when Dan Ariely talks about our irrational decision making, my interest in piqued. This talk has obvious implications for marketing and I am currently wondering how these ideas might apply to education and pedagogy.

Link to Dan’s Video

Note: the quick and easy method to posting TED video’s was not available for this one…or this silly blogger could not quickly find the right TED id # … anyway the link is active and worth the “click”…[22 May 09]

Note2: the quick and easy method was available…this silly blogger found the right TED id# 😉 [19 June 09]