## Thursday, March 13, 2014

### Pi Day in the Math Classroom

Happy Pi Day!

Celebrated on March the 14th in the United States, this holiday recognizes the mathematical constant of Pi, which is often shortened to 3.14 and is written with the symbol π.

The date of the holiday is 3/14. Next year the date will include the first 5 digits of Pi—3/14/15. If you hold your celebration at 9:26 in 2015, you will have covered the first 8 numerals. Math geeks can celebrate by enjoying the wonders of Pi through math, edible math, reading books such as Sir Cumference and the Dragon of Pi, watching the movie The Life of Pi and viewing some Pi-inspired art.

At some schools, students celebrate Pi Day with a snack of pie. (We baked up a few kinds ourselves, just for the occasion. See if you can tell what flavors they are.) At a school in Massachusetts pie was served at 1:59 p.m. (a week early due to spring break) to mark the next three numbers in the 3.14 pi numeric expression. Teachers at the school also have used brownies and music to illustrate math concepts. Read the article from The Recorder of Greenfield, Massachusetts: The Joy of Pi and Brownies.

The numbers 314 (the first three numerals in Pi) reverse to spell PIE, depending on the font you use. You can share this fun mirrored image with your students:
Even though Pi is no longer introduced in many elementary math classes, you can use this unique day to talk about decimals, infinite numbers, area, circumference and diameter of circles and real-world math. Excel Math includes a lesson introducing Pi to sixth graders:

 Excel Math Grade 6 Lesson Introducing Pi (Click to download the lesson sheet with answer key)

Excel Math has been effectively used in GATE classes as well as remedial programs (both as a supplement and in a core position) for years. Excel Math lessons give teachers the resources they need to help every child succeed and achieve (at high levels) in elementary mathematics. Here's what one teacher shared with us:
"My sixth graders showed an average of 41% one year growth in test scores using the Excel Math program. . ." Read more success stories here.

Whatever you decide to do to celebrate Pi Day, you can finish it off with a cup of your favorite beverage and a slice of homemade pie! (Apple was the top pie in the photo at the beginning of this post, followed by cherry, chocolate with meringue, and pecan on the bottom.)

Read more . . .

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5 Ways to Supercharge Your Math Class
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