Pi & STEM. We found it everywhere!

Subjects: Mathematics, Geometry, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Architecture, Natural Science, Astronomy.

Teacher: Erviola Konomi

Data: 13/04/2019 – 26/04/2019

AIMS: This cross-curricular activity is about making maths more interesting to students. The idea is, after lesson ” Geometry shapes in geometry solid” to set numerous interesting activities where students have to do research, use the Internet and different online tools working in international team (eTwinning project), sharing ideas, developing interest in mathematics, stimulating creative activity, gaining new experiences, in order to find how number pi (3.14), integrate in different subjects.

Project-based Learning: Students get fact-based tasks, problems to solve and they work in groups. Students will develop an inquiry-based learning project.
Students have the opportunity to get friends from other countries in eTwinning project and they will improve their foreign language skills, increasing their creativity, build and encourage their problem solving skills in a fun way, supported related role modelling, career aspirations and gender equality.

Lifelong Learning : The Pi number crops up in the natural world, so we give our students the opportunity to practice the skills necessary to create the architecture plan green city and evident the pi number in real life. – like design, problem solving and prototyping using math and engineering because those skills will be valuable for them in future career. Pi number is an irrational number, where its use goes beyond math. Students explore in the beautiful world of the famous Pi number and find connection with other sciences, in different professions and analyze its use in STEM. The number crops up in the natural world, too. It appears everywhere there’s a circle, of course, such as the disk of the sun, the spiral of the DNA double helix, the pupil of the eye, the concentric rings that travel outward from splashes in ponds.

Learning objectives: Students gain a basic insight into the topic of irrational numbers, architecture, design.
• Students experience implementing the knowledge to implementing number pi in different subjects
• To augment student’s motivation for learning STEM
• To apply mathematics in the daily routine and to find relationships to number Pi with other STEM’ s subjects
• To create a favorable environment for the study of the mathematics in the other subjects, careers and professions.

The project is based on:
• Collaboration with the colleagues, teachers, specialists and international partners in eTwinning project
• The increase of the motivation and children’s interest for the STEM field through the discovery.
• the stimulation of the esprit of observation and investigation.

Part 1: Lesson activity. Geometric shapes in 3D. https://1drv.ms/p/s!ApVZHsX6tyRZixf9_P6aML76THX

After math lesson, where the number Pi is used often, we start our activity.

Activity 1: Geometry Problems based on movies. Select some videos (short movies or extracts from movies) which can be useful to work Geometry. We can, for example, invent Math word problems or see how Geometry is used in the scene. We selected the following movies (from different genres, nationalities and styles) and topic to work on.

  1. Pythagosaurus, useful to work on Pythagora’s theorem.
  2. The Egyptian Pyramids, with a pyramid whose base is a square within a circle.

What student have evidencing during the lesson ?

Part II: They noticed that the number Pi is used often in this lesson. Introduce the theme by giving students some facts about the irrational numbers .
Divide students in different groups and I give them same questions about:
The Story of Pi (Annex 1)
• What you know about Pi as irrational number ? (Annex 2)
• Where we use the number pi? (Annex 3)
• How the Pi number is applicant in real live and in other sciences? (Annex 4)
• Our Activities (Annex 5)

Each group, based only on what they know so far, then they have to find characteristics .
• As the teacher I promote the debate between groups. The final objective is to demystify the idea that Pi number have big importance in different sciences and industry too.
• Groups work. Should also give more information.

Part III: What can we do with this number?
Add more information about Pi number by showing this link:

  1. https://www.mathsisfun.com/numbers/pi.html&ved=2ahUKEwjsxdWnnb7hAhWF-6QKHWYjDnAQFjAEegQIBBAB&usg=AOvVaw3uVWYiyjrfmA67ZrunS8q0&cshid=155464863949
  2. www.piday.org
  3. http://web.archive.org/web/20050227180712/http://www.enc.org/redirect/1,1366,,00.shtm?Url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Ececm%2Esfu%2Eca%2Fpi%2Fpi%2Ehtml .

The teacher presents the driving questions to students:
Where we can use Pi number?” I give each group an actual subject: It would be preferable if the class could make a visit to a local radio/ television or industry to fine how number Pi is used. I should present an example of a type of industry/ science that can use pi number. Each group has to make a presentation of there finding .

(Annex 4) Groups give feedback to each other about the presentations.

Part VI: Why Pi number? Students realize a exhibition to show and explain what they’ve learned about this topic to the whole school.

Annex 1: The Story of Pi.

I ask students to research The Story of Pi on the internet. What is Pi the ratio of? Who were the first people known to find a value for pi? What is PI the ratio of? What value of PI did the Egyptians obtain 2000 years before Christ? What value of PI did the Babylonians obtain? Where in the Bible is there an indication of the value of PI? What was this approximate value? In the first one million digits of pi, how many threes are there? What does it mean to “square a circle”?

Annex 2 : Pi is an irrational number. a) Write 2 or more sentences explaining what it means for a number to be irrational.
b) Give an example of a number that is rational and write a sentence explaining why it is rational.
c) Which approximate is more accurate for pi: 22/7 or 3.1? Explain why. Use complete sentences.

Annex 3: Where we use the number pi?
Resources : Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt

(Annex 4) : The application of Pi in real life include several areas like Geometry, Science, Trigonometry and Nature, etc.
Subjects from other branches of science also include π in some of their important formula, including sciences such as

Chemistry, https://famouspistem.wordpress.com/2019/04/26/438/

Physics, http://https://famouspistem.wordpress.com/2019/04/20/sin-wave/
architecture, https://famouspistem.wordpress.com/2019/04/18/my-students-working-together-to-create-neighborhood-using-recycle-material-we-finde-pi-in-real-life-%f0%9f%8f%8d-%f0%9f%8f%98/

Biology https://famouspistem.wordpress.com/2019/04/22/the-length-of-the-dna-helix/

Cosmology, https://famouspistem.wordpress.com/2019/04/10/the-journey-begins/

Using pi, it can measure things like ocean wave, light waves, sound waves, river bends, radioactive particle distribution and probability like the distribution of pennies, the grid of nails and mountains by using a series of circles.

Our activities: ( Annex 5)

Our website: https://famouspistem.wordpress.com/

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