Celebrate Pi Day!

Pi, or 3.141592653589793238462643383279502884197169399375105 and on and on and on … is a mathematical constant that never ends. We celebrate Pi Day because pi is often represented by π but is also shortened to 3.14 or 3/14 or March 14th.

1) Pies!

So what better way to celebrate than to make some pi(e) of your own?

Why not make a pie from your favorite book like pumpkin pasties from Harry Potter or lemon meringue from Amelia Bedelia? Check out our five pies ins(pie)red by our favorite books. There are many more recipes to try and incorporate pi into as well.

PiesInLiterature_LL

2) Pi/ Circle Activities

Truly understanding pi can be as difficult as counting to the 50th digit (it’s one). These K12 activities, taken from the K12 curriculum, are fun to do and they help illustrate the concept of pi. Try the one below:

3) YouTube Video on Pi

Ever think about what pi would look like if it was stretched out number by number, for a whole mile? Wouldn’t that be crazy? Yes, luckily the guys over at Numberphile, who we featured in our 10 YouTube Channels that Make Learning Fun post, are crazy and they did just that!

 .14) Quick/Fun Facts

Take a fraction of your day to learn these 14 fun facts about pi!

  1. Pi is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter.
  2. If you mirror 3.14 it looks like PIE … 3.14|PI.E.
  3. Pi was used to defeat a computer in Star Trek.
  4. π is the 16th letter of the Greek alphabet.
  5. Daniel Tammet, an author who is an autistic savant and has synesthesia, described the number pi as beautiful (he described 666 as ugly).
  6. Egyptian mathematician Ahmes calculated pi to roughly 3.1604 in 1650 BCE.
  7. The pyramids’ height to base ratios also come close to pi.
  8. Calculating pi is often used as a stress test for computers.
  9. Albert Einstein was born on pi day, so Happy Birthday Al!
  10. There is a movie about pi, directed by Darren Aronofsky.
  11. Chao Lu, a man from China, has memorized pi up to its 67,890th digit. I got to the 15th!
  12. The value of pi has been calculated up to its ten trillionth digit.
  13. Pi Day is also celebrated on July 22. In some countries, the month is listed first so 22/7, or 22 divided by 7 roughly equals pi.
  14. In 1897, legislation in Indiana was voted on to set the value of pi to 3.2. Fortunately, a mathematics professor intervened and the bill did not pass.

If you are still yearning for more information on pi, be sure to check out our other pi articles and activities.

Pi Day is a great opportunity to get kids interested in math. If you’re looking for ways to supplement your child’s math education, you might want to consider LearnBop, a highly adaptive online math program for grades 4–12, LearnBop simulates one-to-one learning by providing immediate individualized instruction to the child’s needs. With step-by-step guidance from award-winning experts built into every problem, LearnBop adapts in real time to student interactions and breaks down larger math problems into smaller, more manageable steps so they can develop critical-thinking and problem-solving skills. View the website for more details.

This post was updated March 13, 2017.


Featured Image – catherinecronin / CC by 2.0

 

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