STEM

Hex-a-Huddle Board Game

This week Quanta Magazine published an article on penguins and their hexagonal behavior. I shared this article with my 14yr old daughter, Opal, and we started discussing how this would make a great board game. We designed pieces, drafted our prototypes in Affinity Design, and then utilized a Glowforge to cut. After gluing for a …

Week 48: Bubbles!

Pipe cleaners have so many uses and one of the best ways to use them is to make bubbles. This week I encourage learners to build mathematical structures with pipe cleaners, straws, string, or other waterproof toys to create beautiful structures. I used Zometools in some of my classes as well, and they were a …

Week 47: Math Dance

Get up and move! This week learners can dance their favorite equations, math symbols and concepts. Whatever topic is of interest or in the process of being learned is a great one to figure out the dance moves that go with it. I recommend taking 5 to 10 of your favorite moves and making it …

Week 46: Half-Square Triangles (Truchet Tiles)

If you are a quilter, then you will be a pro with this week’s activity. For the last six months my quilting mother lived with us through chemo and we watched her quilt her heart out. Now that she moved back to her home, I had to laugh because she would have been so much …

Week 45: The Quincunx

This week learners can dive into probability through a quincunx (also known as a Bean Machine). Learners can make bean machines with building toys (Legos), pins and a cork board, or nails and wood (or other methods they devise (3d-printing, sculpture, etc)). Here is a template to use.(It’s a png and is also at the …

Week 44: Conics, Orbits, and Projectile Motion

You don’t have to be in high school math to play with conics, orbits, and projectile motion. This week (or month) learners can play with projectile motion, orbits, and conics sections with the activities below: 1.) Slicing cones Learners can mold cones with clay and slice to see the possible shapes. This will give circles, …

Week 43: Circles and Art

Circles are so much fun! This week I encourage learners to get out their compasses or a circle to trace and start making patterns on paper. Patterns with circles can start simple, but can also get really complex. You can combine your compass with a straight edge and get amazing patterns and tiles. Try intersecting …

Week 42: Perspective

Drawing with perspective is a wonderful way to play with ratios, similar triangles, transformations, and more in math. This week I encourage learners to try to draw with various perspectives. This is a fun activity for all ages and the math can either stay simple or dive into transformation matrices. Here are some activities to …

Week 41: Birdwatching

Birdwatching and math go hand-in-hand. There are statistics on populations, migrations, observations, and so much more. One of the ways to get in touch with nature is to become aware of the birds that frequent your home and walkabouts. Birdwatching gets us to access so many areas of our mathematical minds. We see a size, …

Makings: Wave Pendulum

I have decided to start a new category on this blog for my “makings” – items and projects that I have designed/created for classroom use, art, fiber musings, or just because. Today I decided to create an easy to store, easy to demonstrate, easy to build wave pendulum. I’ve built these in STEM classes, homeschool, …