Happy Numbers and the Melancoil

Our work on this month’s problem led us to the beginning of a larger exploration of a very curious repeated loop in a certain sequence of numbers.

This month’s problem comes from the 2015 Stanford-Math League Tournament Individual Questions for grades 6 & 7.

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Three-Act Math: The Royal Flush

This was the third time CAMI tried out using a 3-Act math task. This one is called Royal Flush and is organized around the probability of a poker hand in Texas Hold’em.


Do you play cards? What kinds of cards do you play? What do cards have to do with probability?

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Three-Act Math: Super Stairs

For our second three-act math task, we learn it is sometimes just as interesting when mathematical models do not work and we have to figure out why.

This week, CAMI continued learning about Dan Meyer’s three-act math model by working on the Super Stairs problem. In keeping with the three-act framework, we started the meeting by watching the short video
below a few times and then posing some questions. Continue reading “Three-Act Math: Super Stairs”

Three-Act Math: Pyramid of Pennies

We talked about problem-posing and inspiring student curiosity in math as we tried out a three-act math task created by Dan Meyer

To start off the meeting, in pairs we discussed – “Real life math”: What does it mean to you? In your classrooms?

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The Mathematics of How CAMI Got Its Name

What does it mean for a decision to be democratic? What role can math play? We explore 7 different voting methods to find out (and name our math teacher circle).


So before our last meeting (Feb. 2015), we sent out an electronic survey to choose a name for our group. Teachers were asked to put the 12 choices in their order of preference from most preferred to least preferred.

Mark presented the results from the electronic survey to name our group. Here are the Results from Online Survey he created. Rather than announce a winner, Mark asked everyone to take a few minutes to look over the report. Continue reading “The Mathematics of How CAMI Got Its Name”

Problem-Posing with Visual Patterns

We can get conditioned to approach visual patterns in a particular way and jump immediately to the problem of looking for the nth figure (# of squares, for example). Beginning with an open, problem-posing approach can help break us out of that habit and really open up the mathematics.

Usha led us through an exploration of a visual pattern, building off of the work we’ve done at the last two meetings. She used problem posing to enable us to have greater ownership on the problem and to widen options to explore.

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Toothpick Patterns: Growing Squares, Growing Triangles, Growing Stairs

We wanted to build off the problem from last meeting, exploring visual patterns, with a focus on different ways of approaching these problems and how can we bring them into the classroom.

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Pentagon Patterns

Still looking for a name for our group, we went around introducing ourselves and each offered one word for our group vision:

Fun, Math, Community, Community, Building, Sharing, Other People’s Thoughts, Resources, Escape, Learning, Ideas, Adult/Young Adult, Inspiration

Continue reading “Pentagon Patterns”