Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Albany Area Math Circle student speaks at national math circle conference

The National Association of Math Circles recently posted selected videos from their annual national meeting this spring in Houston.

One of their videos features a presentation given by Albany Area Math Circle member Elizabeth Parizh on the social aspects of math circles:

Math Clubs and Their Social Aspect:
A View Inside and Out

Elizabeth Parizh

Many children today are put off from participating in math activities because it is not popular among school kids. I will describe my own experiences as both a coach and a student in such math clubs, and explains what it is like for kids, and especially girls. I find that this is a very important problem that needs to be solved, because these students are America’s future and need to be prepared to help their country prosper. And yes, this does require math.

Elizabeth's talk was very well received, though unfortunately the videographer's microphone was placed to pick up more of the crowd reaction than of Elizabeth's voice (which came through quite clearly in person.) Her slides are available here.

The other talks and activities at the meeting were also excellent and several of the other featured videos are available here.

Elizabeth also assisted Bard College Professor Japheth Wood in leading sessions on the theory of impartial games designed for middle school and high school teachers. They used the game of Nim to illustrate the ideas of game trees, strategy, and concepts such as the addition of games. More details of that activity, including handouts, are available here. Professor Wood leads the Kingston Math Circle to our south--you may also want to check out his blog, News from the Math Wizard.

1 comment:

Japheth Wood said...

Thanks for the post - this was a really useful conference, and I hope they continue.

Two quick notes - I'm updating the Nim talk, and I'll present it at the Math Circle Special Interest Group teachers' circle at MathFest! in Lexington, KY in early August. It's evolving nicely.

Another quick note - The Bard Math Circle is now starting up a blog: We're organizing it this summer, and hopefully it will be in great shape for fall semester. It's not so impressive yet, unless you think of it as a summer learning start up blog!