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It’s not a distraction; this is no simple fraction. On March 14 (get it, 3.14), math and science educators and enthusiasts across the globe celebrate the number that represents the ratio of circumference to diameter of a circle with parties, parades, pie-eating, and number-memorization contests. Hey, why not pay tribute to one of the great constants in our lives?
- In 2019 Google announced that one of its employees, Emma Haruka Iwao, had found nearly 9 trillion new digits of pi, setting a new record.
- India’s Rajveer Meena set the Guinness record of most pi digits memorized when he recited 70,000 digits in 9 hours, 7 minutes, while blindfolded, on March 21, 2015. A few months later, Suresh Kumar Sharma, also of India, recited 70,030 digits — but it took him 17 hours, 14 minutes to do so.
If you’re looking for fun and engaging ways to celebrate this mathematical holiday while teaching students about the mystery and excitement of this special number, look no further.
We’ve gathered some of the most useful resources from around the web where you’ll find classroom activities, fun facts, teaching tools, and entire fan clubs dedicated to honoring Pi in all its forms.
From all of us at Ward’s Science, we wish you a happy Pi Day, from our science lab to yours!
Here are Eight Ways to Celebrate:
1. See where Pi Day got its start
The Exploratorium in San Francisco, CA, is said to have founded the first Pi Day celebration over 22 years ago and continues the tradition today with live events, activities, and contests all day long. Visit exploratorium.edu/pi/ for a slew of Pi Day resources and schedule of events.
2. Memorize one million digits of Pi
Is your classroom up to the challenge? See how many digits you and your students can memorize and recite back without error – here are the first million digits to study. Think you can beat Rajveer or Suresh?
3. Learn a Pi Day Rap Song
Head to teachpi.org, a self-described one-stop Pi Day shop for teachers and number lovers, to get pumped up for your memorization competition. A Pi Day rap song is set to the tune of Eminem’s “Lose Yourself,” along with more songs, Pi games, activities, and an entire community dedicated to sharing their love of Pi.
4. Explore Pi Activities
From cutting Pi with scissors to writing your own pi-ku—a haiku about Pi—here are five easy activities to explore Pi with minimal preparation.
5. Study the History of Pi
Learn more about the very first references to Pi in ancient history and texts, and study its chronology through the years. See the history here.
6. Teach Pi with Coding
Build and code your own media center, computer kit, or retro video game using the power of math and coding with the Raspberry Pi kit.
7. Share a Pi Day Meme
There’s no better way to say “Happy Pi Day” from one math lover to another than with this selection of free shareable memes.
8. Don’t forget Einstein!
Coincidentally, Albert Einstein, the father of modern physics, was born on Pi Day, March 14, 1879. Learn more about the life of one of the most influential physicists and mathematicians of the 20th Century.
Be irrational, celebrate Pi Day!