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An email from my sister …

(Jeff is her husband … Nico is her son)

So, Jeff’s nephew is now fascinated, if not a little obsessed with, pi.  Not the dessert form, but the value with which you can derive the circumference of a circle.  Or something like that…  I would need to refer to the lengthy email he sent regarding this newfound interest.  Or, it may have been in the second email in which he suggested looking it up on Wikipedia, because there I could find more interesting details than he could include.

And, he just turned 8.  I thought about my math knowledge at age 8, and recall learning (in the cozy confines of Mrs. Fecht’s jungle-painted classroom), with perhaps a little difficulty, the multiplication table up to number 12.  I’m pretty sure I couldn’t have done any more than that.  Then, I thought, maybe since Nico shares some of these same genes, he may have some advanced interest and/or knowledge in math.  I started out by telling him there is a cool number called “pi”.  And that you can use this number to figure out how far around a circle is.  He said, “I don’t understand that.”  So, I tried to explain it in simpler terms, “Someday, you may want to know how far around a circle is.  I mean, it comes up all the time in life… OK, maybe just once or twice.  Well, really never, but someday you must memorize the number and the principle in order to pass a very important exam that will determine how successful you will be the rest of your life!!!”   “Never mind,” I said.  I don’t want to put too much pressure on him.

Unless, “Sweet Pea” also has an emerging interest in pi, in which case I will start tutoring him now!  🙂

Crazy, huh?

My sister, Susan, a guest writer for Love, Laughter, Life & Laundry, is a busy wife, mother, and physician.

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