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Northbridge community joins math lovers around the world to celebrate Pi Day

Kohulan Jeganathan
Kohulan Jeganathan (9 posts) Math Curriculum Leader, DP and MYP Mathematics Teacher, and DP Chemistry Teacher View Profile

The Northbridge International School Cambodia community joined students, teachers, mathematicians, and math lovers around the world to celebrate Pi Day, on March 14th 2019. Pi Day, is celebrated on the 14th day of March every year to pay homage to the mathematical constant Pi (π), which is approximately equal to 3.14. This constant is also first introduced to many students at Northbridge as they start MYP, in Grade 6.

Pi is one of the first irrational constants students learn in Math. They learn about its significance, such as how pi is the ratio between the circumference of any circle to its diameter. Students also learn the applications of pi to the different disciplines, and how important it is in understanding the world around them.

However, Pi day is more than just a day to celebrate our favourite irrational number. It is also a day to celebrate mathematics as a whole, and here at Northbridge the mathematics department is passionate to get students to engage in fun facts and competitions to instill our students with a newfound love in one of the most abstract disciplines. 

Students learn the allure of pi, on this day. For such a simple ratio the number never has an exact value. It is transcendental, in which the decimal place keeps going and humans have still not calculated a specific end to its complexity.  

As Antranig Basman best explained it:

Pi is not just a collection of random digits. pi is a journey; an experience; unless you try to see the natural poetry that exists in pi, you will find it very difficult to learn

Over the years with the enhancement of technology, the number of decimal places of pi has been calculated to 2.7 trillion. With this in mind, the mathematics department at Northbridge challenged our students in both Primary and Secondary to recite the numbers of pi. 

Northbridge International School Cambodia - Pi Day

This began in their math classes, as students received some inspiration through the following ted talk from a fellow student and his journey with pi, and what inspired him to recite the numbers. This led to a whole school competition with our Grade 9 student Chekka who was able to recite 156 numbers of pi, a school record! The Primary leader of the memorization challenge was Shing in Grade 4 with an impressive 61 digits.

Northbridge International School Cambodia - Pi Day

Secondary students also engaged in another challenge, which was to determine the number of spherical chocolates in a cylindrical container. Students were asked to estimate the amount chocolates without the use of a measuring device and to solve their answer by using mathematical reasoning, which included pi (π).

Northbridge International School Cambodia - Pi Day

Overall, Pi Day enabled the Northbridge community to come together and encouraged students to celebrate the importance of Mathematics. 

Northbridge International School Cambodia - Pi Day