Thoughts on teaching induction

I don’t plan on doing this very often, but I thought I’d re-post one of my earlier blog posts—one that I wrote a year ago, when I had many fewer readers. Now is an appropriate time for me to re-post it because I am currently teaching induction in my Discrete Mathematics course. Enjoy. In their…

Kindergarten Mathematics (part 2): a report

Last week I wrote a blog post asking for suggestions for math to present to my son’s kindergarten class. My readers posted many great comments. Thank you all. Today was the big day,… and it was a great success! I began by talking about what I do. My son introduced me as a math teacher….

Mathematical art by Kevin Van Aelst

I just stumbled upon the website of the artist Kevin Van Aelst. His photographs are scenes constructed from food and drink that take the form of mathematical and scientific images. Here are some of the mathematical pictures on his artwork page: A Cantor set made out of fried eggs Logarithmic spiral made out of crumbs…

Kindergarten mathematics

This is a call for help. My son’s kindergarten teacher has invited parents to come in and talk about their careers. I’d like to go in and talk about math. I’d like to have some interactive hands-on mathematics activities for the kids to do. I also want them to be activities outside the typical kindergarten…

Tennenbaum’s proof of the irrationality of the square root of 2

Yesterday I came a across a new (new to me, that is) proof of the irrationality of . I found it in the paper “Irrationality From The Book,” by Steven J. Miller, David Montague, which was recently posted to arXiv.org. Apparently the proof was discovered by Stanley Tennenbaum in the 1950’s but was made widely known…

A new way to collaborate: DropBox

I have a long-time collaborator who lives in Georgia (I’m in Pennsylvania). I’ve had good luck collaborating with him via email, but it is a pain. As soon as one of us edits a file he sends it to the other person as an email attachment. We haven’t had any “forked” files, but we do…