This morning I had the pleasure to be a mathematical guest in my daughter’s third-grade class, full of inquisitive eight- and nine-year-old girls, and we had a wonderful interaction. Following up on my visit last year (math for seven-year-olds), I wanted to explore with them some elementary ideas in graph theory, which I view as mathematically rich, yet accessible to children.
My specific aim was for them to discover on their own the delightful surprise of the Euler characteristic for connected planar graphs.
Magnetic electronic blocks. What an interesting and easy way to create circuits & build STE(A)M skills. We're thinking about incorporating this in our classrooms in the near future.
As a guest today in my daughter’s second-grade classroom, full of math-enthusiastic seven-and-eight-year-old girls, I led a mathematical investigation of graph coloring, chromatic numbers, map coloring and Eulerian paths and circuits. I brought in a pile of sample graphs I had prepared, and all the girls made up their own graphs and maps to challenge each other. By the end each child had compiled a mathematical “coloring book” containing the results of their explorations. Let me tell you a little about what we did.
We began with vertex coloring, where one colors the vertices of a graph in such a way that adjacent vertices get different colors. We started with some easy examples, and then moved on to more complicated graphs, which they attacked.
Together, as learners in the education space, we would like to share a selection of what we read and reflect on internally.