Multiplying for Children in the Silicon Valley

Book Recommendation for Silicon Valley Kids

What would you get when a jar continues to expand whatever is inside of it? A fantastic magical multiplication problem! Anno’s Mysterious Multiplying Jar by Masaichiro and Mitsumasa Anno is one incredibly long multiplication problem compiled in a story form. It is important to solve this book step by step so that it does not become too difficult for your child to solve. By the end, the numbers become gigantic and much more difficult, so you should have your Silicon Valley child start slowly and work their way up. If you need to, use a multiplication chart or dots to make a counting table. Factorials are a difficult concept to grasp so be patient with your child as they learn and explore the world of multiplication. Anno’s Mysterious Multiplying Jar by Masaichiro and Mitsumasa Anno. This book is not for everyone, however: I would recommend it to those who enjoy math and want to practice their multiplication in a nontraditional manner with story math problems. The book also uses larger words than most children are used to so they will learn a few vocabulary words as well. I recommend this book to children in the Stanford and Silicon Valley area who are at an advanced level of mathematics and would be excited to solve long multiplication problems.

silicon valley multiplication help

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If you want to learn about more math book recommendations, check out the website for Mathnasium of Palo Alto-Menlo Park.

Counting in the Silicon Valley

Counting quickly and accurately can be a very challenging task for kids just learning math in Silicon Valley. But thankfully, Greg Tang is here to help with another fantastic book! The Grapes of Math is a wonderful book that contains catchy rhymes and colorful images to convey math tips and tricks to your children! We like it so much that we bought a copy at Mathnasium of Palo Alto-Menlo Park. The Grapes of Math contains phrases that are just as witty as its title. In no time, these easy tricks will have your child in the Silicon Valley count with speed and ease. Greg Tang’s books are some of my absolute favorites and The Grapes of Math is no exception. The Grapes of Math is sure to be a parent and child favorite. I recommend this book to all children in the South Bay Area and Silicon Valley who are learning to count. Whether your child needs extra support or not, this book is bound to help them and lead to higher scores in math. The more practice with counting your child gets, the better off they will be. With this book, your child will love counting. Head over to your local bookstore or library to pick up a copy of The Grapes of Math. You will not be disappointed!

Silicon Valley early math help

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Lemonade Stand Math in the Silicon Valley

Through Lemonade for Sale, a cute story of children running a lemonade stand written by Stuart Murphy, your child will learn how to keep track of sales using a bar graph. The kids in Lemonade for Sale are trying to earn enough money to repair their clubhouse. While selling lemonade in a town similar to those in the Silicon Valley, they rely on math to keep track of sales. This is a useful skill especially during the summer when your child prepares their own lemonade stand in the Silicon Valley. After reading Lemonade for Sale, your child will feel inspired to start making lemonade and setting up their own lemonade stand. At this point, this is the perfect time to suggest to your child that they keep track of sales using a bar graph. They will also gain practice with math through using money and giving change. At the back of the book, there are questions related to the content of the story and activities that will help your child build up their mathematical toolbox. I recommend this book to all children in the Silicon Valley and Bay Area who wish to start their own lemonade stand.

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Evens and Odd Math in the Silicon Valley

An interesting story is a sure way to get your child to remember the differences between even and odd numbers. Even and odd numbers are very important for your child to master for school in Silicon Valley. That is exactly what Kathryn Cristaldi does in her book Even Steven and Odd Todd. In Even Steven’s life, everything is even! That is, until his cousin Odd Todd spends the summer in Steven’s house. Even Steven turns a ghastly green color every time an odd number comes into his life. He felt ill when there were eleven nuts on his ice cream. Even Steven’s garden was even! He decided to enter it in a perfect garden contest. He could not control his anger upon waking to see one odd row of cactuses in his garden that Odd Todd had planted. Odd Todd was messing up Steven’s evenness!

When the contest judge came to Even Steven’s garden, he loved the garden and proclaimed Steven the winner! The prize was full of even numbers which is suiting for Steven. Could you imagine this happening in the Silicon Valley? At the end of the awesome story, there are four methods of checking whether numbers are even and odd. This book is the perfect mix of entertainment and math for your young child. I recommend this book to all young children in the Silicon Valley and Bay Area.

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History of Pi from Silicon Valley: Never-Ending Fun with a Never-Ending Number

For math enthusiasts around the world, Pi is far more than a useful constant for equations that’s something close to 3.14. Pi, which never ends or repeats, continues to become more and more significant in advanced math and science, and embodies the simplicity and mystery that mathematicians strive for. Such lovers of Pi are abound in the high-tech firms of Silicon Valley and around Stanford University in Palo Alto, and as such, Mathnasium’s tutors attempt to convey enthusiasm about Pi when giving math help. However, great feats involving Pi have been accomplished across the world.

Taking Pi to the Extreme: World Records

Silicon Valley Pi

Mathematicians have become extremely competitive about pi, even from ancient history. In Ancient Greece, the creators of math worked to find more precise values of Pi using different methods. Archimedes used a method of circumscribed and inscribed polygons to eventually work out a value of 3.1418, an error of only .008%!

Originally posted to Flickr as Blue Gene/P From Argonne National Laboratory

Originally posted to Flickr as Blue Gene/P
From Argonne National Laboratory

Of course, the invention of calculators and computers (including those developed in Silicon Valley) and the study of calculus elevated the calculation of pi to a whole different level. The current record is 10 trillion digits (10,000,000,000,000), calculated by Shigeru Kondo of the University of Illinois.

The competition now has moved to memorization. While most normal Palo Alto high-school math student would be hard-pressed to name more than two decimals off the top of their head, the verified world record stands at 67,890 digits by Chao Lu of China. However, Ukranian neurosurgeon, mathematician, and hypnotist Andriy Slyusarchuk claims to have memorized 30 million digits, and has been consistently able to recite random sequences within this range at command.

Here at Mathnasium of Palo Alto-Menlo Park, we’re having our own Pi recitation contest for the students we tutor in math, as well as anyone else who is interested. Prizes will be awarded throughout Pi week for contestants!

> Learn more about Math Tutoring in Palo Alto / Menlo Park

An Irrational Idea: The Indiana Pi Bill

A record pi mishap occurred in 1897, when the Indiana State Assembly attempted to pass a bill that erroneously explains a method for finding the area of a circle. The bill, developed by teacher and amateur mathematician Edwin J. Goodman, stated that the ratio of a circle’s diameter to its circumference (Pi) was exactly equal to  4.2. The bill was almost passed, but thankfully math professor from Purdue University came to Indianapolis to fight the bill. Since then, the Indiana Pi Bill has been a symbol of the disconnect between government and technical education, as well as a source of good laughs for math lovers everywhere.

Thankfully, no such ridiculous legislation has ever been proposed in California or around the San Francisco Bay Area, but it never hurts to continue to educate others about the importance of mathematics, and there is no greater opportunity for this than on Pi Day, March 14!

~ Mathin’ Catherine, 3/5/2013