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Archive of posts filed under the Resources category.

Symmetry, Algebra and the Monster — Quanta Magazine

I’m excited to announce the launch of my column for Quanta Magazine!  In Quantized Academy I’ll be writing about the fundamental mathematical ideas that underlie Quanta’s stories on cutting edge science and research. Quanta consistently produces exciting, high-quality science journalism, and it’s a tremendous honor to be a part of it.

My debut column, Symmetry, Algebra and the Monster, uses the symmetries of the square to explore the basic group theory that connects algebra and geometry.

You could forgive mathematicians for being drawn to the monster group, an algebraic object so enormous and mysterious that it took them nearly a decade to prove it exists. Now, 30 years later, string theorists — physicists studying how all fundamental forces and particles might be explained by tiny strings vibrating in hidden dimensions — are looking to connect the monster to their physical questions. What is it about this collection of more than 10^53 elements that excites both mathematicians and physicists? 

The full article is freely available here.

STEM Grand Challenges

100Kin10I’m excited to be joining 100kin10 for their STEM Grand Challenges launch today in New York City.

Founded in 2011, the mission of 100kin10 is to recruit, train, and retain 100,000 excellent STEM teachers in 10 years.  To that end, they lead a coalition of nearly 300 public and private-sector organizations committed to supporting STEM education in the US.

Over the past two years, 100kin10 has been working to identify the key systemic problems in STEM education.  Today’s STEM Grand Challenges launch maps out the interconnected landscape of those problems and issues a series of challenges that address the problems identified as most pivotal among the network.

At the event, I’ll be speaking about my personal and professional experiences with some of the grand challenges, and I’m looking forward to hearing from a variety of different perspectives on how we can best improve STEM education.

You can learn more about 100kin10 here.

MfA Summer Think 2017

Graphic for WebsiteI’m excited to be participating in the inaugural Summer Think, a teacher-led summer conference hosted by Math for America.

The theme of the conference is Big Ideas In and Out of the Classroom.   I’ll be delivering the opening keynote, Connecting Big Ideas In and Out of the Classroom, and will also be running a related workshop later in the conference.  I’m honored to be providing the opening remarks for this event, which is undoubtedly the first of many.

The Summer Think has been organized and orchestrated by teachers from Math for America’s various fellowship programs, and features two dozen sessions proposed and facilitated by teachers.  In addition to the underlying support offered through their fellowship programs, MfA has provided organizational support for the conference.

Teacher-led, teacher-driven professional development lies at the heart of Math for America’s programs, and the fact that over 50 teachers are participating in a conference less than two weeks after the end of the school year speaks to the impact it has on MfA’s teachers.

You can learn more about the conference, including a list of sessions and presenters, here.

World Science Festival 2017

I am excited to be a part of the 2017 World Science Festival!

The World Science Festival is a week-long celebration of science and the arts in New York City.  Now in its tenth year, the WSF has drawn over a million and a half visitors to its science-themed activities, which are designed for the public and hosted all over the city.

I will be participating in the WSF’s Ultimate Science Sunday, a day full of interactive exhibits, demonstrations, and games.  I’ll be constructing a large aperiodic tiling with visitors, as well as sharing some cool 3D-printed mathematics.

The 2017 World Science Festival runs from May 30th to June 4th. You can see the entire Ultimate Science Sunday program here, and find out more about the World Science Festival here.

Making Math with Scratch — Scratch Ed

Scratch Ed, an organization at the Harvard Graduate School of Education that supports teaching and learning with Scratch, recently profiled some of my work teaching mathematics using Scratch.

The article, Making Math with Scratch, highlights a Math for America workshop I ran for teachers that centered on approaching mathematical concepts through the lens of coding and computer science.  Several projects I use in my classroom are featured, and I also discuss why I like teaching with Scratch and how it’s become a valuable part of my approach to teaching math.

The purpose of the workshop and Patrick’s classroom activities are to demonstrate the power of bringing mathematics and computer science together. “Ultimately the goal is to show how math and computer science are great partners in problem solving. And Scratch provides a terrific platform for that.” 

I’m excited to share the work I’ve been doing with math and Scratch over the past few years–including talks and workshops at conferences like Scratch@MIT, SIAM ED, and the upcoming NCTM Annual meeting–and I really appreciate this nice profile from Scratch Ed.

You can read the full article, Making Math with Scratchat the Scratch Ed website.