Jump to content

Happy Pi Day!


Recommended Posts

Today is 3-14, otherwise known as Pi Day. Not Pie, but Pi, as in 3.14.......or the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. A FUN fact is that Pi has been calculated to over 1 trillion digits past its decimal point! (Sorry, I'm a math geek)

When I was teaching math to middle school students, Pi day was always my favorite.  We did many FUN activities to learn the concept of Pi and then we ate pie...not a bad day of teaching!  

To me, every day is a cause for celebration.  So, how can you celebrate Pi day when you don't love math as much as I do????  The obvious is to eat pie, whether it be a slice or the entire thing.  Not a fan of pie? -you can also celebrate by eating foods that start with the letters Pi - pineapple, pizza, etc. Or you can eat foods that are round in shape - cookies, pancakes, pizza, PIE, etc.  Not into food right now? How about a Karaoke party with Pie themed songs - American Pie (Don McLean), Cherry Pie (Warrant), Honey Pie (Beatles), Flaming Pie (Paul McCartney), Custard Pie (Led Zeppelin), Country Pie (Bob Dylan), and many more!

No matter how you celebrate today, the important thing is to celebrate TODAY. Have some FUN. My motto is: Yesterday is gone, tomorrow has not yet come, we only have today (I'm sure this is a famous quote, I just don't know who said it). So, go enjoy some Pi(e)!  



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I'm a math geek also but only to the extent that mathematics is a tool to accomplish an end -- a typical engineer's prospective.  Pi indeed is an unusual concept.  Using it to calculate the circumference of a circle with certainty is impossible.  The formula for calculating the circumference of a circle is 2 times Pi times the radius of the circle.  Since Pi is an irrational number, one that cannot be precisely known, anytime Pi is used in a calculation, the result cannot be precise.  But, to the engineer, the margin of error is very, very small.  Indeed small enough to ignore.  If we didn't ignore it, we would be unable to size tires to wheels, design man hole covers for sewer casements, fit prescription lenses to eye glass frames, and a whole host of circumference of a circle calculation-based determinations.

Many mathematicians spent many years to attempting to precisely learn the circumference of a circle by squaring the circle.  The picture below shows a circle with a radius of 1 and a square with the side of the square root of Pi. Using just these two elements of information, who can tell me why determining the precise area of a circle using a square is impossible?


squaring the circle.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have always found it strange that the USA uses the the singular form Math when in fact there such a wide variety of branches of that subject,so we in the UK always use the expression Maths.Just to add to the pot why do the USA upset Dates in the calandar, we in the UK describe a time in any year as the Day- Month - Year that seems to me more natural.We therefore cannnot have a Pi Day in the UK.Just had to get that off my chest LOL,anyway while I am here,every thing is fine here in the UK driving on the left for centuries,you just had to go and change it didnt you?,just to be different.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I am still working out my thoughts, but is it because Pi is not a rational number? We can only calculate the area of the square that is close to the circle's by using a rational number that is approximate to Pi????

Your question is a bit above the pay grade of a gal who just sits around all day trying to figure out the best way to help local homeless folks secure decent housing!!  But it got me thinking!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Yes but it is kind of a tricky question. In the figure, the length of one side is given as the square root of Pi. The square root of an irrational number ( Pi) is an irrational number so an approximation. Therefore, we don’t know the exact area of THIS square. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.