Mathematics is everywhere in science, technology and art. Today and yesterday. Therefore, teachers need to relate mathematics to cultural and historical aspects. This gives students the right perspective: this is a science of ideas and ideals.
“The object of mathematics is the honor of the human spirit.”
Carl Gustav Jacob Jacobi (German mathematician, 1804 – 1851)
The Culture Moves Scrapbook
CultureMoves is a user-oriented project aiming for touristic engagement and educational resources by leveraging the re-use of Europeana content. The Learning Scenario is based on a scrapbook created for this purpose on the Culture Moves portal.
Romanesque Math Discoveries serves as an activity guide, where mathematics is related to Romanesque architecture. With this scrapbook students visualize, investigate, play and compose in a creative and relational way.
Europeana Collections set the tone for the lesson. The Route of the Romanesque was presented with a video mapping. Many students were unaware of the monuments on the Route and the main characteristics of the Romanesque.
The number Pi is an irrational number and is related to the perimeter of the circle, as shown in the story An irrational love story or the TED-Ed movie The infinite life of… Pi. Students could read the story and see the movie at home. In class, they talked about both.
Finding the date of birth in the infinite decimal places of Pi can be a stimulating activity for students, like finding Pi in Romanesque Architecture. Students loved these activities performed with their mobile phones.
A MathLapse that illustrates a process for constructing a stamp for imprinting a rosette which has (only) rotation symmetry led to the relationship between Pi and the lateral surface area of a cone. This way students better understood the symmetry of rotation and a stamping process.
With a Kahoot game, students could complete a formula and find the solution to the problem presented in the mathematical rosette. Consequently, they were more interested in learning about the formula. It was also more fun! Students showed more attention and willingness to understand that deduction. Likewise, learning from error is possible here.
Written and verbal communication is very important for a better understanding of the issues. So, both were explored in this activity.
An inspiring challenge
An example of the use of the spirograph and the difference between mathematical rosettes and non-rosettes was made by a student and discussed in class. Likewise, it was proposed as a homework assignment. Inspirograph Yourself is a good activity to do at home and seems like a good starting point for a school project.
In conclusion, all students enjoyed the mathematics presented in the Route of the Romanesque. It was an experience with videos, stories, games and mobile and computer applications. This learning scenario can be reinterpreted and be the basis for interdisciplinary work.
Would you like to know more about this learning scenario? You can download it below:
Did you find this learning scenario interesting? You might also like:
- The Gothic and Romanesque, in plastic by Artur Coelho
- Symmetrical ART by Rafael Montero
- Isometries on Croatian and European traditional costumes and old handcrafts by Marijana Karničnik
The featured image used to illustrate this article is available on Europeana Collections and belongs to the public domain.