Math, Craft, and Literacy

Ever see stripes that seem off or weird? That almost make you uncomfortable?
I have and, in crocheting a striped scarf I have been careful not to replicate that off-putting stripeyness (my Colbertesque word). To remain safely in comfortland, I've crocheted even patterns, 3 rows of green, 3 rows of black, etc. whenever I've gone with stripes. Now I'm ready to stretch myself and create a beautiful, more complex striped pattern, maybe even the one pictured above.
Beauty is well-acknowledged as in the eye of the beholder and there is evidence that the eye appreciates symmetry, even when it appears in less than obvious forms.
Mathematical constructs like the Fibonacci sequence is one such form that can be followed to make eye-catching stripes.
( )
By the way, it seems to me that this author, Sandra Petit, embraces distractions, or tangents in writing as a natural part of the thought process and unabashedly shares them. I Love it!
See my post, "The Distracted Person's Dilemma."
So math has its uses in daily life after all!

Mathematical sequences can also serve as a great entry into language and math literacy through craft. A teacher or facilitator in a math or crafting class can discuss the craft (or clothing or blankets, etc.) with the students, focusing on the topic of creating eye-catching stripes.
S/he can transition to mathematical sequences, their origins, and how to use them to create stripes and other patterns (especially for afghans and other items crafted in the square and for spirals).
Students can then plot and or create (crochet, knit, sew, etc.) an item using a mathematical construct to determine the striping. To facilitate metacognition, language development,  and integration of this new material into their knowledge base,  students can write about the class discussion and their creative exploration of mathematical sequences.  As a closing activity, students can present their writing and craft to the class.

This mosaic was constructed by Jim Bumgardner.
Whether they intend to or not, participants are bound to learn about the interesting intersection of math and design and to experience the resonance of mathematical concepts in our daily lives.

No comments:

Post a Comment