March 14th (3.14) has always been a holiday in my classroom...Pi Day!
Pi Day 2016
Pi Days Past
Buffon's Needle Experiment
For this experiment, we drew lines on a piece of poster board that were two toothpicks apart from each other. Then we dropped all of the toothpicks onto the poster board and randomly spread them. Next we counted the number of toothpicks that crossed a line. The total number of toothpicks divided by the number that crossed the line was approximately Pi!!! Very cool. Very fun. The more toothpicks you use, the closer approximation you will get.
Mandala is Sanskrit for circle. Anything that is circular can be thought of as a mandala. Many religious traditions use mandalas as a form of reflections, prayer or meditation. I teach them how to use a compass and a straight edge, the tools of geometric construction, in order to create their own mandala.