#### More about Tau:

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Holiday math

## For the Curmudgeons: Vi Hart’s Anti-Pi Rant

#### More about Tau:

## Unending Digits… Why Not Keep It Simple?

#### Math Poetry Activity

## Pi Day: It’s an Irrational Holiday

## 2015 Mathematics Game

## Rules of the Game

#### My Special Variations on the Rules

## December Advent Math from Nrich

### Advent Calendar 2014 – Primary

### Advent Calendar 2014 – Secondary

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## Math Storytelling Day: The Hospital Floor

### My Math Story

### What Math Stories Will You Tell?

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Denise Gaskins' Let's Play Math

Helping families to learn and enjoy math together.

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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.

CREDITS: 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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I just discovered this fun Pi Day song from The Singing Nerd. Definitely need to add him to my YouTube subscriptions.

Hat tip: Singing Banana.

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*[Feature photo above by Scott Lewis and title background (right) by Carol VanHook, both (CC BY 2.0) via Flickr.]*

Did you know that playing games is one of the Top 10 Ways To Improve Your Brain Fitness? So slip into your workout clothes and pump up those mental muscles with the Annual Mathematics Year Game Extravaganza!

For many years mathematicians, scientists, engineers and others interested in math have played “year games” via e-mail. We don’t always know whether it’s possible to write all the numbers from 1 to 100 using only the digits in the current year, but it’s fun to see how many you can find.

**Use the digits in the year 2015 to write mathematical expressions for the counting numbers 1 through 100. The goal is adjustable: Young children can start with looking for 1-10, middle grades with 1-25.**

- You must use all four digits. You may not use any other numbers.
- Solutions that keep the year digits in 2-0-1-5 order are preferred, but not required.
- You may use +, -, x, ÷, sqrt (square root), ^ (raise to a power), ! (factorial), and parentheses, brackets, or other grouping symbols.
- You may use a decimal point to create numbers such as .2, .02, etc., but you cannot write 0.02 because we only have one zero in this year’s number.
- You may create multi-digit numbers such as 10 or 201 or .01, but we prefer solutions that avoid them.

- You MAY use the overhead-bar (vinculum), dots, or brackets to mark a repeating decimal. But students and teachers beware: you can’t submit answers with repeating decimals to Math Forum.
- You MAY NOT use a double factorial,
*n*!! = the product of all integers from 1 to*n*that have the same parity (odd or even) as*n*. Math Forum allows these, but I’ve decided I prefer my arithmetic straight.

*[Feature photo (above) by Austin Kirk via Flickr (CC BY 2.0).]*

Click on the pictures below to explore a mathy Advent Calendar with a new game, activity, or challenge puzzle for each day during the run-up to Christmas. Enjoy!

*[Feature photo above by Christiaan Triebert via flickr (CC BY 2.0).]*

Have you ever heard of *Math Storytelling Day*? On September 25, people around the world celebrate mathematics by telling stories together. The stories can be real — like my story below — or fictional like the tale of Wizard Mathys from Fantasia and his crystal ball communication system.

Check out these posts for more information:

- Happy Math Storytelling Day
- Math Storytelling Day resources
- Moebius Noodles: Math Storytelling Day archive

My story begins with an unexpected adventure in pain. Appendicitis sidewhacked my life last week, but that’s not the story. It’s just the setting. During my recovery, I spent a lot of time in the smaller room of my hospital suite. I noticed this semi-random pattern in the floor tile, which made me wonder:

- Did they choose the pattern to keep their customers from getting bored while they were … occupied?
- Is the randomness real? Or can I find a line of symmetry or a set of tiles that repeat?
- If I take pictures from enough different angles, could I transfer the whole floor to graph paper for further study?
- And if the nurse finds me doing this, will she send me to a different ward of the hospital? Do hospitals have psychiatric wards, or is that only in the movies?
- What is the biggest chunk of squares I could “break out” from this pattern that would create the illusion of a regular, repeating tessellation?

I gave up on the graph paper idea (for now) and printed the pictures to play with. By my definition, “broken” pattern chunks need to be contiguous along the sides of the tiles, like pentominoes. Also, the edge of the chunk must be a clean break along the mortar lines. The piece can zigzag all over the place, but it isn’t allowed to come back and touch itself anywhere, even at a corner. No holes allowed.

I’m counting the plain squares as the unit and each of the smaller rectangles as a half square. So far, the biggest chunk of repeating tiles I’ve managed to break out is 283 squares.

Have you and your children created any mathematical stories this year? I’d love to hear them! Please share your links in the comments section below.