Tuesday, November 06, 2012

MATH-terpieces: The Art of Problem-Solving

CROCUS 2012 is over, but the math-mania it ignited has not!

Here is another masterpiece, art and math combined. Authored by Greg Tang and illustrated by, let's just say, some really good folks.

Photo Courtesy: Amazon.com

Here is how Mr.Tang went about it:

Step 1. Take a well-known work of art. Stick a picture of it on the page on the left side. Tell the reader its title as well as the artist's name.
Eg: Van Gogh's Starry Night

Step 2. Make a little poem about the painting. Put it under the picture.
Eg: A rhyme about bright exploding swirling stars.

Step 3. Take the key feature of the artwork and make groups and stick them on the page on the right. Eg: Groups of 4, 1, 2, 3, 2 stars.

Step 4:  Invite the reader to add the groups of stars together in different ways to get a particular sum
Eg: Find four ways to make seven stars.

Step 5: Repeat for next art work.

The author has thus put in 12 works of masters like Degas (ballet shoes, what else?!), Monet (lilies, you guessed it), Cezanne (peaches, yes), Renoir (umbrellas of course) and so on. The new ones for my 7-year old were Mondrian and Pollock, possibly because they do not feature in the National Gallery in London or in any of James Mayhew's wonderful Katie books (reviewed here). We googled and learnt quite interesting things about the two artists - Mondrian mainly worked with squares, lines and three primary colours while Pollock mostly dripped paint!

Looking forward to reading Tang's other masterpieces - The Grapes of Math, Math For All Seasons and Math Appeal (reviewed here).


Arundhati said...

What fun! Like the title too

sandhya said...

Sound like a very doable project. Loved the way you have put it, Chox.

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