Math Celebrity February 2018

positivity February 2018 When someone asks why they should learn math, you don’t have to look far to provide an answer. Google’s search engine? Made up of automated equations. Amazon’s upsell? All algorithms. Welcome to the world of math. I thought, “If a team from India can understand this in 10 minutes, why can’t you do the same thing for tutoring?” I was tutoring math after work, but my client list was growing faster than my free time. I didn’t have room to schedule any more students. Obviously, many more people needed help. I began working to find a way to assist them. Don’ s Answer – Don Sevcik If you’re looking for an answer to the question, “Why should I learn math?” don’t look far. We have answers for you. Until next month, It started with a simple calculator. I was still learning web development, and once I got the calculator to work, I shared it with others. I got positive feedback; people wanted to see more. So I dove in. I grabbed books, and I started building more calculators. Math Celebrity was born. I’ve always been drawn to math, though I wasn’t by any means a mathematical genius. I even struggled with it as a kid. I was okay until it got to anything theoretical. Once I was able to put a system behind it, though, and see how you could use that to solve a problem, it helped me understand the theory. That’s the approach we’ve taken with Math Celebrity. You’re not just going to learn how to solve a problem— you’ll learn the thinking and the theory behind it, too. Part of Math Celebrity is helping kids overcome the huge hurdle of getting past the first steps in solving a problem. Do you remember facing that hurdle in school? You’re given a series of numbers and symbols and don’t know where to begin, even after the teacher or a book has explained it to you. If I can alleviate that hurdle for even one student, all the hours I’ve put into Math Celebrity have been worth it. When I’m not building calculators and trying to solve the next problem, I’m with my family. My daughter keeps me going, especially during long days. She and my wife are my motivation. We love to get outside and hike together, enjoying the natural beauty around us.

What you find on Math Celebrity today is the result of several years of working behind the scenes on mathematical patterns — all so you can enter a math problem and have an answer. But you don’t just get an answer; you also get an explanation of how it came to be. As a programmer, my job is all about automating systems. One of my projects focused on making pension plans easier to understand. I needed to get to the core of a pension plan to make it translatable to a team in India. Pension plans involve a lot of math, so I used an equation that allowed a person to change the numbers and see the resulting pension, making it possible for anyone to see the process step by step. The team in India was excited, and they could easily follow the process. They asked if I could do more of this for other processes.


What Your Chi ld Can Learn From Baking

But the benefits of a membership are truly realized when you consider it a lifetime investment. Let’s put it this way: Premium membership, at $397 per year, costs you a dollar and one penny a day. In addition to the stress relief that Math Celebrity buys your family (which alone is worth hours of therapy), consider what else that dollar and penny a day are buying. it, they can translate that into good grades at school. Good grades mean more scholarships for college (we don’t need to get into the cost of college here — any of us with kids are all too aware of it). When they take the SAT, their improved understanding of math can lead to higher scores, resulting in more scholarships and admission to more colleges. We could take this even further into the realm of their career. Problem-solving will help them navigate through difficult situations. But I think you get the idea. If your student learns how to approach math and understands the problem-solving principles behind separately and then folded together. It only takes one deviation from the instructions for a pastry to go from delicious to disgusting. Spending time in the kitchen, then, is a great way for kids to learn the importance of reading directions carefully and comprehending what they’ve just read. CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING Cuisine is a fundamental part of every culture. Introducing your child to dishes from around the world will expand their horizons. Want your child to be a less picky eater? Involving them in the cooking process is the surest way to get them excited about trying new flavors and ingredients. NUTRITION Now, you might not think that baking cookies will encourage greater nutritional awareness, but hear us out. Sugar is often buried within packaged foods. When you bake something at home, a child gets to see, firsthand, just how much sugar goes into certain sweets. Meanwhile, cooking savory dishes also allows them to learn what constitutes a balanced, healthy diet.

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, you’re probably wracking your brain for the perfect recipe to bake for your loved one. There’s nothing wrong with store-bought chocolate, but there’s no topping the personal touch of some homemade baked goods. If you have kids, baking alongside them can be just as rewarding as enjoying the fruits of your labor. As an added bonus, baking is a hands-on opportunity where your child can learn all sorts of important concepts. Here is a short list of some of the educational lessons hiding in your kitchen. MATH Baking is a numbers game. Just take a look at any recipe, and you’ll recognize the importance of math in building a beautiful cake. Having children measure out ingredients helps them learn about fractions and ratios. You can also test your kids by doubling or halving a recipe for multiplication and division practice. With older kids, practice unit conversions by asking, for example, how many pints are in half a gallon. FOLLOWING DIRECTIONS Not unlike computer science, baking requires a strict order of operations. The wet and dry ingredients often need to be mixed

When you become a member of Amazon Prime, you’re treated to special deals, hours of television and movie streaming, and, for most of us, the ultimate highlight: free two-day shipping. On Spotify, the music streaming service, membership gets you ad-free, unlimited music that you can download, which allows you to access songs from their massive library even when you’re offline.

On Math Celebrity, a membership plan comes with similar perks. Like Spotify, you get ad-free access to the site. Plus, you get unlimited use of calculators, and customized lessons that let you design a personalized approach to learning. You can also download your lessons to Excel and save your calculations to review later. Membership

comes with a free copy of “One Second Math,” a book that covers math problem-solving from beginning algebra to advanced calculus. You’ll see the benefits of membership on a daily basis when your student tailors their learning to new topics. With online support provided directly by Don, they get customized, on-the-spot help when you have additional questions.

When you take these lifetime benefits into account, doesn’t $1 a day sound pretty good?


problem is in front of you, with step-by- step work next to it. Why is this important? The more time your student saves in solving and understanding one math problem, the more time they’ll have to move on to the next problem, work on their English homework, or attend gymnastics class. If your student can understand math more quickly and easily, math is no longer a barrier. Math becomes digestible and useful. Instead of being a barrier to success, it’s a tool and skill they can apply to all areas of their life. That means it’s also no longer a barrier for you when you’re trying to help them with their homework. Instead of hours spent after school hacking away at a problem as you both grow more and more frustrated, you click and an answer and explanation are there, right in front of you! Blink. Just like that.

Every day since our website began in 2007, people from all over the world have supplied math problems to our site. Thanks to these contributions, our automated tutor is getting smarter. With each problem submitted, the algorithm grows stronger and its ability to solve more problems improves. It’s a smart program, and it’s also fast — blink-of-the-eye fast! That’s the promise of Math Celebrity: When you submit a problem, you’ll have an answer with a step- by-step explanation … in one second! You might think, “How’s that possible?” Easy. Blink your eyes. That took one-third of a second. Opening and closing your eyes takes less than a second. Not by coincidence, that’s also how long it takes our search box to run your math problem and display each step of the process on the screen. Submit your math problem, blink your eyes, and as you open them, the solution to your

bra in puzzles

Sweet and Zesty Detox Salad

Ingredients For the Salad •

For the Dressing •

3 cups chopped kale leaves 2 cups chopped broccoli florets 2 cups chopped red cabbage 1 cup matchstick carrots

1 large carrot, roughly chopped ¼cup rice wine vinegar 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger 1 tablespoon honey 1 tablespoon white miso ½ teaspoon sesame oil Salt and pepper, to taste

• • • • • • •

• • • •

1 cup chopped cilantro

½ cup toasted slivered almonds • ⅓ cup sliced green onions • 1 diced avocado

directions 1. To make the salad, add all ingredients to a large bowl; toss to combine. 2. To make the dressing, add all ingredients to a blender or food processor. Pulse until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper or add extra honey for a sweeter taste. 3. Drizzle dressing over salad and serve immediately.



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Behind Math Celebrity

Cook Your Way to Better Grades

3 Unlock the Full Potential of Math Celebrity

The Secret Behind ‘One-Second Math’

Whip Up This Winter Salad in a Flash!


Vacation With Your Valentine

Your Valent ine

POSITANO, ITALY Positano looks like a scene from a sappy romance novelist’s imagination. Kick back with your partner on a balcony overlooking this seaside town. Inhale the century-old colorful Italian architecture perched on the lush mountainside. Positano’s small size repels swarms of tourists. It’s the perfect place to spend hours shopping, sampling delicious local cuisine, and taking a dip along the 300-meter beach. THE MALDIVES Enjoy total seclusion with your main squeeze from a water villa smack dab in the midst of the glassy blue Indian Ocean. Sip champagne in the shade of a palm while you gaze at the sunset. Or get a little more adventurous, strap on a snorkel, and check out the abundant aquatic wildlife. Many hotels in the area include access to an array of boats for your own private excursion along the mild waves. Or you could stare into the horizon, wondering how such a heavenly place exists.

Valentine’s Day brings fancy dinners, heart- shaped boxes of chocolate, and fantasies about magical places you and your beau would have escaped to — if only you had the PTO. So, grab a glass of bottom-shelf cab sauv, cuddle up next to your special someone, and try to make them feel bad for taking you to Chili’s. When the guilt wears off, why not escape to one of these picturesque fantasy lands? cobblestone streets of Paris with your loved one is très passé. All the real high-rolling romantics migrate southeast to the famous Oberoi Udaivilas hotel in western India. Visitors feel like royalty inside the traditional Mewari cream-colored palace. Why not stroll around the twisting gardens or relax beside the glassy pools sprinkled throughout the estate? Enjoy constant care from the devoted, world-class service staff. UDAIPUR, INDIA These days, meandering through the


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