Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Have Fun Discovering Pi in Math

Here is a fun way for students to 'discover' Pi.

Materials
• (3) different size circles -small, Medium, and Large (bottle caps or other circles)
• yarn or string
• scissors
• ruler
• calculator (optional)
• paper and pencil

Directions
1. Introduce or review the terms diameter and circumference.
2. Have students measure the diameter of the 1st circle with a ruler and record the measurement.
3. Ask students how they should measure the circumference of circle 1. Elicit from the students that they should use string, then measure the string.
4. Have students measure the circumference of the 1st circle with the string, then measure the string with their ruler. They need to record the measurement.
5. Have students divide the circumference by the diameter.
6. Continue with the same procedure to measure circle 2 and 3.
7. In each case, when the students divide the circumference by the diameter, they should get approximately 3.14 or 3 1/7 (or 22/7).
8. Discuss with students how this happens with ALL circles.
9. Introduce the term Pi and the Symbol for Pi.

10. Of course having some tasty pie would be a great wrap up for this activity!

Don't forget to celebrate Pi Day on March 14 (3-14)!!!

Have fun with math!

1. We do this every year... They always LOVE it!

Kim