Thursday, March 13, 2014

3.14 reasons for leadership

I am the sponsor of our school's Mu Alpha Theta chapter and each year we elect officers to do the work of spreading the word that math is cool!  I am proud of our chapter.  The members spend hundreds of hours tutoring their classmates and participating in monthly competitions.  The capstone event is our yearly celebration of PI Day, a schoolwide event where pie is provided and all our students learn a little about PI. 

This year the officer in charge of the event got sick and the remaining officers got an important lesson in leadership.  As we all stood around at 7:15am staring at 66 pies, it was clear that the person who knew how many pies needed to be delivered to each classroom was in fact home in bed. 

It was a mad scramble, but eventually the pies were delivered and the students sprinted off to their first period class.  What I love about this event is not that it was chaotic, but that it was a great opportunity for the rest of the officers to see what happens when leadership is not present.  They had to step up and make a new plan to get the work done.  It wasn't pretty, but it worked, and I know these students learned an important lesson, not about math, but about life.

I want to remind all of my adult friends, teachers and parents, that giving kids a chance to lead, fall down, and pick themselves up is a vital part of the school experience.  Of course we adults can do things better, but that's only because we're more experienced.  Someone gave us a chance to plan something.   Maybe it didn't go perfectly, but we learned.

PI Day is actually Friday, March 14, but we do not have school.  Thus I wish you happy PI Day and hope you enjoy a piece of pie.

We begin Spring Break on Friday as well so I will be off line for the next week.  I hope to finish grading and write some comments, plan the rest of this school year, get some rest, and eat a slice of pie... maybe two.

Photo Credit

Here's a quick little PI Day puzzler for your students courtesy of Click and Clack at Car Talk and my colleague Bill Personette. 

13 matchsticks are arranged to form the Roman numeral equation 23/7 = 2.  This is obviously wrong.  Move one of the matchsticks to make the equation "correct."  (No fair moving the division bar or the equal sign. )

No comments:

Post a Comment