Remember to RSVP for our February Meeting


Hope to see you there!
RSVP  here:

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Recap of January 19th Meeting: KenKen

In our first meeting of 2017, the Southwest Chicago Math Teachers’ Circle delved into the mathematics behind the game, Kenken, and how teachers could use it in their classrooms.

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Kenken puzzles are n by n squares and like Sudoku, the solution requires that each row and column have the digits 1 through n exactly once, but in any order. What distinguishes Kenken from Sodoku is that a Kenken the board is divided into irregular boxes or “cages” which include a number with an operation like addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division. The numbers in the boxes must result in the given number in each “cage” after completing the given operation. IMG_5996.JPG


Kenken puzzles range in difficulty from very simple to extremely difficult which makes them great to use in classes with mixed abilities. Students who get hooked on these puzzles will have a fun way to practice their simple addition, subtraction, multiplication and division facts.


We enjoyed solving these problems individually and in groups and then discussed different problem-solving strategies that we used while solving these puzzles.


Join us for our next meeting on February 16th, 6-8:30 pm at Trinity Christian College.

Our topic will be Cryptography!

Remember to RSVP: and we hope to see you there!

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Remember to RSVP for our First Meeting of 2017!


RSVP here:

Hope to see you there!

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November 17th Recap: Taxicab Geometry

Have you ever wondered how emergency services determine the closest available vehicle for an emergency or cab companies determine the closest vehicle to pick up a waiting customer?  Because cities like Chicago are set up in a grid format, distances must be computed along streets and avenues rather than “as the crow flies.”  This problem creates the need for taxicab geometry.


A total of 18 participants worked on a variety of related problems, including the determination of the closer point to a desired location, the comparison of Euclidean and taxicab distances, and the determination of a “Taxicab circle.”  These regions must be polygonal to follow the grid pattern of streets and avenues.


Considerable discussion focused on the apparent value(s) for π and the determination of circular area in Taxicab geometry.  We finished the evening with an exploration of ellipses in this environment.


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Remember to RSVP for Our November Meeting!

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RSVP Here:

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October Meeting Recap

“Origami is such a great way to get your hands dirty with Math!” -Tom Hull in Between the Foldsimg_5712

The Southwest Chicago Math Teachers’ Circle had the privilege of having Dr. Mary Webster Moore lead our October Meeting. Mary recently retired after a 40-year career as a school principal, middle school math teacher, and college math education professor. During the past two decades, she has been a specialist in origami.img_5697

Mary led the participants in multiple constructions that can be used in elementary, middle, or high school classrooms. She also asked numerous questions to help the attendees to unpack the mathematics contained in the origami activities.img_5730

Everyone had a great time and we constructed several traditional origami art like the Masu Box, Star Box, and Cube. Below are some of our creations!img_5751

“As a mathematics educator, I’ve moved past seeing origami as a novelty; it is very much a part of who I am as a teacher and artist. It gives me different tools with which to think about my craft as a teacher; in several dimensions, one of which just happens to be mathematics. All models are mathematical in the deepest sense of the word; it is the essence of the origami art form.” 
-Dr. Mary Webster Moore

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Remember to RSVP for Our October Meeting!



Hope to see you there!

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