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Title of Presentation(s) Grade Range
Math Fun Activities
(Can be adjusted to specific grades and topics.)
Puzzles and Tangrams! Students will experience fun hands-on activities using tangrams and other puzzles with Dr. Maria Diamantis.
Geometry and Tangrams! 2-12
Pi-Day / March 14
Dr. Maria Diamantis will have students participate in activities that involve the irrational number 3.14…
Self-Similar Shapes: Once Considered Monsters, Now Considered Tame
Once Considered Monsters, Now Considered Tame. See squares, rectangles, and triangles from the perspective of self-similarity. From that, make sense of some of the “monsters” of mathematics like Sierpinski's Gasket and Heighway's Dragon. Finally, see common natural shapes such as broccoli and clouds in a mathematical light. Nothing more than familiarity with the names of common polygons is needed to appreciate this discussion. First names (which need to be provided beforehand) will be used to produce personalized fractals for all participants.
Mathematical Chaos and Unpredictability, or Why Long-term Weather Forecasting is Impossible
Participation in hands-on exercises that give a glimpse into mathematical chaos and the Butterfly Effect help illuminate why long-term weather forecasting is mathematically impossible. Perfectly predictable functions exhibit perfectly unexpected (and unpredictable) behavior! A mix of different electronic devices and/or software packages in the audience makes for the most lively and surprising experience.
You May Have Seen Tessellations Before, But Have You Ever Seen Rep-tessellations?
Some tiles are more intricate than others. Many students will have seen a tessellation, or tiling, of the plane made from rectangles, triangles, hexagons, or some combination of polygons. Some will even have seen the fascinating tilings of M.C. Escher, but very few will have seen rep-tessellations, built from replicating tiles, or rep-tiles. These rep-tessellations tile the plane at infinitely many scales! This presentation will take the audience on a journey through all these types of tilings and leave them with a take-home mathematical art project.
Math Patterns through History!
Dr. Maria Diamantis will have students participate in patterns presented through the lenses of mathematicians from all over the world.

NOTE: Teacher must be present in class during visiting scholar presentation. Presentations are subject to scholar availability. Any specific needs (media projectors, open tables, sink, etc.) for presentations must be available in the classroom. Specific needs will be provided to teachers prior to scheduling. Redundant presentation in a morning or afternoon are possible if there is an interest from the school and faculty time is available.

CRISP (Center for Research on Interface Structures and Phenomena) provides a number of resources for teachers including kits, demos, professional development workshops, and more. Visit CRISP to learn more.

For more information:

Colleen L. Bielitz, Ph.D. 
Assoc. Vice President
Strategic Initiatives and Outreach

(203) 392-5459