Category: OpenLab Assignments (Page 1 of 2)

Video – Sonam Gyamtso

Part 1,

I found the Video created by Vi Hart is fascinating, beacause it make me feel that factoring is way more interesting than what I knew before. She found the pattern of factoring by drawing the stars. Which is very unlike with the way how other teachers introduce pattren of factoring to their students. I loved the out come of the last few drawings.

This video that created by Vi Hart is about how to explore the mysteries of flexagation., by use strips of paper. I found it if very fascinating,  you strip and tape it nicely into a twisty Рflody loop.  and you can flip the Hexaflexagons again and again.

This Video is called Pi Day is Round, I found this is very interesting beacuse I remember that on the day 3/14/15,My hight school math teacher told our class the today is Pi day, but no one queation that if we round the Pi it wil 3.1416, not 3.1415.


Part 2.(Video One)

I am very glad that I got the chance to watch this videos created by Vi Hart, after I watched these videos I was shocked by Lady who create the videos. They show you many very intersting things that related to math, but you will naver see this things in taxt book or learn them in class. In addition, This Videos also shows that math is related to verything in our daliy life. It also convinced me that Math is not just a course, it is a independent world that has it own system and language. However,I think that I did not understant about her Videos was: what was the reason she speak so quickly in her very videos?  I had to watch the video three or four time to get understant the concept of the video.

Part 3.

Many student give up math, because they belive that math class is one of most ¬†boring class, and it is also very hard. I have been ask many people about what is you favorite class and wich class you hate the most. I found one thing about math is very interesting, many people see math as thery their favorite calss or the class they hete the most. So I come up a conclution that people who understant the math will love math but people who don’t unserstant the math will think it is a very boring class. So as a math teacher, it is important that you can show your student the side of math that is interesting. But it is not a essey thing do to, beacuse, math is not like other courses, you can tell a intersting story about it or do a fancy expaeriment. ¬†I believe that Vi Hart showed us a very good way to teach your student math, just like the Video one.




Part 1

This video shows the relation of simple doodling to demonstrate and compare the relationship between the Fibonacci sequence and real life.

This video demonstrates the use of symmetry and its reflection in order to create a pattern shaped as a braid. The use of this type of pattern may be used to produce a sound braid shape such that when notes are added to it there will be harmony. Mathematically speaking this sound braid is considered a an object exsting on a two-dimensional plane with space time.

This video gives details on the different types of infinity and impresses on the difference between countable infinity and uncountable infinity.

Part 2. My favorite video of the three is the Doodling in Math video. The video was eyeopening for me because I never knew how much of a connection a sequence can be related to real life. I loved the use of a pineapple and a pine cone, which already are two amazing things, the video left me wanting to know much more about the Fibonacchi sequence. I learned that in fact a pine cone of any shape still follows the order of the Fibonacchi sequence. One question I have is there a way to show that the pine cone’s leaves on the top reflects or follows the sequence as well?

Part 3. Thia video has inspired me to be creative when I teach math in the future. I believe videos like this or even examples related to this, could have helped me get a stronger foundation of math because it might have kept my attention a little but longer than the more traditional way of teaching where a teacher gives direction and leave the student to apply the concepts to solve problems. One may ask, is this way of teaching math? I declare that it is indeed math and this type of teaching may prove highly relevant in teaching students at any grade level, and it is done in a way that will help a student remember and apply it to other forms of sequences and patterns. There is a big connection between this video about the Fibonacchi sequence and the reading Lockhart’s Lament, because Lockhart professes that there is a need to teach students in a way in which they get a full understanding of the meaning of things instead of memorizing a formula. The example he used with a box whose space is shared by a triangle and using the triangle as part of the rectangle is a very useful way to show students why the formula of the area of a triangle works in turn helping them understand that the imagination is what helps you understand the notion. The author states that something as simple as drawing a straight line connecting to points on the rectangle gives a drawing more meaning. Accordingly, Vi Hart shows that she has the same sentiments by having a video where she explains the sequence but takes her time to demonstrate what a sequence meant and proved it in various ways using a pine cone and a pineapple giving the sequence more meaning. The use of real life examples is a effective way of teaching, I find that students may pay more attention and they will most likely remember what was taught without using memorization.

Videos, Jeron

Doodling in Math Class: Stars
This video involves the concept of factoring using stars. The stars total points are factored and you are able to create 1 dimensional stars with those factors.

Doodling in Math: Sick Number Games
This video is about turning numbers in specific triangles and creating patterns that would make it easy to guess the numbers that would follow.

Rhapsody on the Proof of Pi=4
This video involves breaking down a square with perimeter 4 into even smaller ones until you almost get the shape of a circle. Other shapes were used and were broken down until they became almost straight lines.

Part 2
The video I chose to discuss is Doodling in Math Class: Stars which explains how you can make factors of star points useful. It was the first video I watched so it completely intrigued me at first glance. The quick drawing with precision and accuracy made the presentation that was displayed appear visually entertaining. When I then looked at what was being said I became even more intrigued since it showed at first how stars can be easily made by using 2 of the same shapes. These shapes included a triangle, which came first, then a square and finally a hexagon. Then she went into factoring these stars and made 1 dimensional stars that correlated to the factors. It was like making factoring, which she said was barely discussed, into a more enlightening scope than a formal one.

Part 3
This video reflects to my math teaching since it can help to make people think outside of the box. Factoring might be simple but there is never a fun way to teach it. By creating stars and then factoring them then factoring can lead children to see the fun in math. People usually remember entertaining teachings but tend to forget the boring ones. It can even lead you to start your own ideas since one perspective can lead to many others. By looking at this video I was able to broaden my understanding of star points where they can be made using regular shapes instead of having to draw every single point one by one. This sort of correlates to Lockharts Lament since this sort of teaching of factoring would make children think and to not see things with a formal approach but a creative one. By doing this, it might spark creativity in them as well making them real mathematicians instead of just the copy and paste ones.

Videos – Gary Zeng

Part 1:

From watching this video I’m amazed that you can make 90 and 180 degrees from make of any size or folded. When I’m in school I would always be using a ruler or a protractor in middle school and high school. I feel so amazed from learning how much a small of piece of paper can accomplished when folded. If I ever need to draw a 90 or 45 degree angle I would know a good way to create one know. I would really recommend that others should watch this video also on how informative it is.

This video is interesting and also I enjoyed how the person was rhyming like if they were actually there during that time. The video was like a code book because the person was using the numbers from pi. This is making me think about the books that I read from high school from William Shakespeare. I think now that could there way of speaking be some kind of language from using the numbers from pi. The video was also informative for me learning about champernowne’s number and also copelano-erdos number.

I know that singing was a good way to help memorize things for class or was a good educational way to learn new things. I didn’t realize that you can memorize pi from singing it by changing your pitch while singing each of the numbers. The video helped me remember some of the numbers of pi that I forgot. This video is a good way of helping us remember the numbers of pi. Singing the number in a higher pitch for the bigger numbers while a lower pitch for the lower numbers in pi. This is a good method for helping others to remember the digits of pi other than 3.14.

Part 2:

From watching the three videos I really enjoy watching them and the information they talked about. I now know resourceful ways in creating 90, 60, 45, 22.5 degrees with folding a piece of paper 3 to 4 times in have depending on what angle you want to draw. Another video helps helps we with remembering the digits of pi with a way that everyone enjoys doing and listening in this kind of day and age. Singing can be a good way to help anyone to remember information for class or for teachers to help students learn a new topic that they are having trouble with. I didn’t realize that when the characters in William shakespeare books could be speaking in code from using the digits of pi. I knew that numbers can be used as codes for letters but I didn’t know that numbers from pi. The one question that I have is was the characters from William shakespeare plays actually speaking in pi when you decode the words that they are saying into numbers? Another question that I have is if you can sing about the digits in pi can you sing with some of the digits in pi but can you do it for all the digits in pi?

Part 3:

The videos could mean in my own teaching is that I can teach students to be resourceful for things that aren’t enough supply of in the classroom like protractors. I believe that the videos can be both math and teaching because when watching the videos you are learning a concept form math and also teaching you new information that you didn’t know until you watched the videos. I believe that the video about William Shakespeare and connecting to pi could be a prove and is still trying to prove it now currently. I can connect this to Lockhart’s Lament because students can learn from watching videos or find creative ways to help them to remember information for a new topic or information for a test.

Wau: The Most Amazing, Ancient, and Singular Number
         In this video Vi Hart talks about a number that was discovered in East Asia and in many other ancient societies. She describes the different mathematical relationships, usually infinite fractions, that included Wau (some that just included Wau and others were equal to Wau). She related the special number to nature and other fields of study like physics.
Why Every Proof that .999… = 1 is Wrong
          In this video Vi Hart goes through some of the many proofs that are used to show that .9 repeating is equal to one. She goes on to prove or attempt to prove these wrong to say that the two are different numbers that are independent of each other. She invalidates these proofs and then briefly talks about why mathematicians believe it is so.
Doodling in Math Class: Stars
¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†In this video Vi Hart talks about drawing stars and connects this activity to math. She talks about stars with different numbers of points and how the number of points relates to the number of sides in each of the polygons that make up the star. She then makes this star drawing into a “game”.
¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† I was a little confused, especially during Hart’s “Doodling in Math Class: Stars” video not because I did not understand what she was saying just because I felt that she was going a little to quick while speaking and the video recording was also sped up so while trying to process what she had just said she was already on to the next part of her speaking and all throughout her hand was moving very quickly on the paper. She did show what she was saying at the same time that she was saying it. For this reason I had to pause the video multiple times to reassess what she said. ¬† There was not anything in the video that particularly bewildered me or made me say wow except for when Hart started drawing the much larger stars with many points (when she began using the protractor): I thought that the stars that she made were beautiful and they also require a lot of talent to make. I learned that a star with p points can be drawn with 2 p/2- gons; this was a mathematical relationship that I had not been aware of. In fact I have not ever looked into the math behind stars before. I also learned that even with a set number of points in the star and a set number of polygons formed within the star, there are still multiple ways of drawing the star even with the restrictions. Although I did have to pause the video ever so often so that I did not fall behind on what Hart was saying, I for the most part understand everything that she said. So the only question I have after watching the video, is not directly about the math or the drawing in the video, it is: how does Hart discover the relationships between things like the sides of the stars and the number of polygons in the star; or rather: how is she so successful at finding things like the “game” in this video, that still relate to math, but that a majority other people would not be able to discover?
¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†I think the video could really help me with my own math teaching, even though I did not really enjoy the fast pace of it. ¬†What I can learn from Hart is that I need to implement creativity in the classroom at least every once in a while especially in order to keep the students engaged. As Hart emphasizes in the beginning of the video while talking about how she was bored during her math class while learning about factoring, classes that are only lecture can get boring and can cause students to become distracted. So rather than have my students lose focus like Hart did from what the class was actually about: I will give my students an activity to do in class that directly relates to the topic of the day. This way they have something fun to look forward to and are then more inclined to pay attention during class so that they can preform well during the activity. This way they get the fun that they want in class, without losing focus from the actual class and making fun for themselves. Hart’s video really helped me come up with this idea for my own classroom because she expresses that class can get boring, which is true for any student at one point or another and that there are fun and thought-provoking activities to do during class that can still be mathematical and related to class. Kids have a hard time focusing on school work especially for note-taking and problem solving but they are often all for interactive activities, and so I have come to realize after watching this video that combining the two ways of learning can help to take away some of this lack of focus.

Videos-Armando Cosme

Part 1)

a) How to Draw a Perfect Circle- This video reminds us what is the definition of a circle and how to perfeclty draw one each time.

b) The Calculus of Bad Driving- This video goes into detail of the math behind the situation a a car approaching an intersection.

c) Visual Multiplication and 48/2(9+3)- This video show us the meaning (or another representation) of a commonly used algorithm.


Part 2)

Response to video three.

This video had me in a state of amazement. I had no clue that the algorithm multiplication can also be represented by intersection points. I am such a visual person when I learn, so seeing that this works before my very eyes was beautiful. I totally learned a new way to multiply, but one question I do have is, does this only work for two numbers that are both in the tens place.


Part 3)

My definition of teaching is the sharing of information where you understand and express in some way or another the information you just got. Since I can successfully understand and repeat what she did in this video, I say, this is teaching. I feel a lot of people think math is all about algorithms, but math also has diagrams, ideas and expressions that then get transformed into algorithms, so I do believe this is math. One thing that always stays in my head from Lockhart’s article, is that any little thing can be beautiful in math, and geez, this sure was. I also recall the article saying that math is so much more than algorithms, which is why I wonder, why this wasn’t shown to me in one form or another in school.

OpenLab #7: Hold your breath and dive into math – Vi Hart

Vi Hart describes herself as a “recreational mathemusician” – she has a unique approach to mathematics and its connections to the world. ¬†In this assignment you’ll be exploring some of her videos (she has a YouTube channel here), and using them as a basis for creating a new blog post.

Assignment (Due November 10, 2016).  Create a new blog post responding to the instructions below. Creating a new blog post allows you more flexibility than simply leaving a comment. You have the ability to edit your work after you submit it, and to include photos, videos and other media. It also allows you to contribute to the public content of our course website.

You can get started by clicking the plus sign at the very top of our site¬†(if you don’t see it, make sure you are logged in to the OpenLab). Detailed instructions on creating a new blog post can be found here¬†(see “Writing a Post” in the middle of the page). You should create a new post including the following:

  • The title should include the word “Videos” and also your name.
  • Your post should include responses to all three parts of the assignment described¬†below.
  • Under “Category,” select “OpenLab Assignments” (you will see this on the right side of the screen)
  • Under tags, enter “OpenLab 8”, “Vi Hart”, and any¬†other tags you think¬†describe the videos you watched (for example, you might choose “pi” if it’s a video about pi). ¬†Don’t forget to click “Add” after entering your tags in the box.
  • When you’re done, click “Publish” (the blue button towards the top right on the screen).


Watch at least three different videos by Vi Hart from .  You should:

  • choose videos at least 2 minutes in length
  • choose¬†videos that are related to¬†math in some way
  • choose three videos, at least two of which should not appear on her front page (older or less popular videos). ¬†For a full list of her videos, click the “Videos” button near the top of her page – or click here. ¬†Scroll to the bottom and click “Load more” to see older videos.

In your post, include a response to each of the following three Parts:

Part 1. Include a link to each video you watched (3 minimum), the title, and a one or two sentence description of what the video was about.

Now choose one video to focus on.  You MUST watch it 3 times. Use it as the basis for parts 2 and 3.

Part 2.  Write one paragraph discussing the contents of the video:

  • How did you feel watching it? Did you like it, or not? Were you confused? Inspired? Bored? Excited? Bewildered? ¬†Why?
  • What is one thing you learned¬†from the video?
  • What is one question you¬†have after watching it?

Part 3. ¬†Write a one-paragraph reflection discussing what the video could mean to your own math teaching. ¬†Is it math? Is it teaching? Is it relevant to the work you will be doing in the classroom?¬†Is there¬†any connection to the earlier¬†reading assignment Lockhart’s Lament? ¬†Any other thoughts?

Extra Credit. ¬†You can earn extra credit by responding to one of your classmates’ posts. ¬†As always, be kind, be respectful, be honest.

OpenLab #6: Proof Journal

Your assignment for the next week is to try to prove the conjecture that your group created in class on Tuesday, 10/14/15.  You must spend at least 90 minutes working on this.  Trying to prove something can consist of many different activities, such as the following (you do NOT have to do all of these things Рyou can choose how to spend your time Рthey are provided for inspiration only).

  • coming up with ideas, and testing them out (for example, by creating puzzles and trying to solve them)
  • trying to understand what the conjecture says
  • trying to solve puzzles that other people created
  • trying to create puzzles (and solve them yourself)
  • communicating¬†with other members of your group (talking, emailing, etc.)
  • trying to write down a proof
  • other stuff…

As you work, keep track of what you are doing, thinking, and feeling (this is metacognition Рan idea that discussed way back in OpenLab #2).  What did you do during the time you spent?  Did you create any puzzles?  Did you solve puzzles?  Did you change your mind about whether the conjecture is true or false?   Did you have any new ideas about how to prove the conjecture?  Did you have any ideas that you gave up on?  How did you feel as you worked Рwere you frustrated/confused/happy/depressed? Why? Did your mood change along the way?

Assignment (Due Thursday, 11/3/15):  Submit a journal of your efforts in the comments below.  Your response should be at least 300 words.  Describe what you did during the 90 minutes you worked, and express in some way what you were thinking and feeling during the process.  Your response can include puzzles (use or other work you did along the way.

Extra Credit. ¬†Respond to a fellow student’s comment. ¬†Did you do similar things? Different things? Do you have any suggestions for them? Be kind.




conjecture3 conjecture1 conjecture4 conjecture2

OpenLab #5: Lockhart’s Lament

In 2002, a mathematician named Paul Lockhart wrote an essay¬†called “A Mathematician’s Lament,”¬†a passionate criticism of mathematics education in America. ¬†It has become widely known among mathematicians and mathematics educators – not everyone agrees with everything he says¬†(though many do), but everyone seems to have something to say about “Lockhart’s Lament,” as it is called. ¬†For this week’s assignment, you will read a short excerpt (three pages) from his essay and respond to the prompts below.

Assignment (Due Friday, 10/14/16). Your assignment has three parts:

First, read the section titled “Mathematics and Culture” (pages 3-5) in Lockhart’s essay, (click here). ¬†If you’re interested, I encourage you to read more, starting at the beginning – but this is not required.

Second, write a response to what you read and post it in the comments below.  Your response should be at least 300 words. Your response should represent your own thoughts and opinions on what you read, and can include responses to any or all of the following:

  • What is one thing that you agree with in the reading? Explain why.
  • What is one thing that you do not agree with? Explain.
  • Choose one¬†quote that you think stands out in the reading. ¬†Give the quote, and explain why you chose it.
  • Have you ever had an experience of mathematics as art?
  • On page 5, Lockhart describes mathematics in schools today as “heartbreaking”. ¬†What do you think he means? ¬†Do you agree? How do your own math experiences in school compare to his description?

Third, and most important, I want you to write down a conjecture about the Bridges and Walking Tours game, and bring it with you to class on Friday¬†10/14 (do NOT post it here).¬† Consider Lockhart’s¬†example of a triangle drawn inside a rectangle. ¬†He described the process of playing around with this picture, until he arrives at the basic idea for calculating the area of a triangle. ¬†He contrasts this with a traditional math class, in which the formula is given to students without providing them any opportunity to explore the problem on their own. ¬†The bridges and walking tours game¬†is a little like the triangle-rectangle picture – it’s fun to play around with, but you may not be sure what the point is. ¬†You’ve had a chance to play with it a bit, and try some different challenges. ¬†Now what? ¬†Your job is write down a conjecture (a guess!) or a question about your game. If you could have one question answered about your game, what would it be? If you wanted to be a master of your game, and be able to solve any challenge that was given to you, what would you need to know?¬†Write down a conjecture or question about your game, and bring it with you to class on¬†Friday¬†10/14¬†(do NOT post it here).

Here is an¬†example: Let’s imagine that you have just been introduced to the game Tic-Tac-Toe. ¬†After playing it for a while, you might come up with one of the following:
Conjecture: The person who goes first always wins.
Question: Is the corner the best move, or the center?
Conjecture: It’s impossible to win, no matter who goes first.

ps. ¬†Paul Lockhart retired from being a first-rate research mathematician in order to teach math at a private elementary school here in Brooklyn,¬†Saint Ann’s School, where he says “I have happily been subversively teaching mathematics (the real thing) since 2000.”

OpenLab #4: Bridges and Walking Tours

The assignment below is due BEFORE CLASS on Thursday, September 29th (it is essential that you complete it before class, as we will be doing a class activity building on the assignment).

We are going to play a game creating walking tours of cities with bridges. ¬†We begin in the city of King‚Äôs Mountain, which is built on four land masses ‚Äď both shores of a river and two islands in midstream ‚Äď connected by a total of seven bridges (shown in green).

EXAMPLE 1:  Can you create a walking tour of the city that crosses every bridge exactly once?  You can begin anywhere you like, and end anywhere you like, as long as you cross each bridge just once.

Background –¬†Graph Theory

We can simplify the picture of King’s Mountain to make it easier to deal with:

The key elements of the map are the four land masses (let’s label them A, B, C, and D) and the seven bridges (p,q,r,s,t,u and v) (thanks to for the images):

For the purposes of our problem, we can simply think about each land mass as a point (A, B, C, and D), and the bridges as lines connecting the points (p,q,r,s,t,u and v) – like this:

We call this kind of picture a graph – the points are called vertices and the the lines are called edges. ¬†Our goal of finding ‚Äúa walking tour that crosses each bridge once‚ÄĚ is now matter of tracing out all the edges without lifting our pencil (and without repeating any edge).

Assignment, Due Thursday 9/27 (beginning of class)

Warm up (This Warm Up is just for practice Рyou do NOT need to submit your answers Рsee below for the three-part Assignment to be submitted).  The following examples build on EXAMPLE 1 above.

WARM-UP EXAMPLE¬†2: If you are given the freedom to build one new bridge in King’s Mountain (“make one new edge in the graph”), can you do it in such a way the walking tour becomes possible? ¬†Do it!

WARM-UP EXAMPLE 3: If you are given the freedom to destroy one bridge (“erase one edge”), can you do it in such a way that the walking tour becomes possible? Do it!

WARM-UP EXAMPLE 4: Construct walking tours for each of the following graphs (or decide if it is impossible).

Assignment.  Your assignment has 4 parts.

PART 1.  Leave a comment responding to EXAMPLE 4 (above), telling us for each one of the 8 graphs whether a walking tour is possible or not.  You only have to state whether it is possible or impossible for each one.

PART 2. ¬†Challenge your friends: ¬†Now it‚Äôs up to you to build your own graph, and challenge your classmates to construct a walking tour (or to determine if it is impossible). ¬†It can consist of as many points as you wish, and as many bridges (edges) connecting them. ¬†You MUST label your points¬†“A, B, C…” etc. ¬†When you‚Äôre finished, decide for yourself if a walking tour crossing each bridge exactly once is possible. ¬†¬†Remember, the most challenging puzzles are the ones where the answer is difficult to determine. Post two puzzles in the comments. ¬†See the note ¬†“POSTING YOUR PUZZLE ONLINE” below for instructions on how to draw and share graphs online.

PART 3. ¬†Solve a friend’s puzzle. ¬†Leave a response to a friend’s posted puzzle, giving a solution. ¬†TO POST A SOLUTION, JUST LIST THE POINTS OF YOUR WALKING TOUR IN ORDER.

Here is a puzzle:
Here is a solution: (start at A) –¬†A, B, D, A, E, B, C, E

PART 4.  The third part of your assignment is to write a short paragraph (at least 3 sentences) responding to the following prompt.  Be sure to respond to each part:

Writing Prompt: ¬†Did you enjoy this assignment? Why or why not? ¬†Describe a connection between this assignment and our work in the class. ¬†(If you don’t believe there is a connection, try to imagine why we are doing this). ¬†Leave your response in the comments.

POSTING YOUR PUZZLE ONLINE. ¬†I recommend the site¬†– it allows you to draw something, then click “SAVE” and get a link to your drawing. ¬†You can post the link in a comment, and we’ll be able to click on it and view your drawing. ¬†¬†Don’t worry if it’s not pretty! ¬†For example, here is a graph that I drew (can you find a walking tour that crosses all edges?):¬†


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