Author: japheth

  • Driving with Cats

    I’ve surprised myself this week with many skills that I didn’t know that I (still) had. Students have left campus (some are weathering it out there), and I’m social distancing at home with my family. I’ve quickly set up home offices, even taped ethernet cable between floors to strengthen our bandwidth, and offered advice on […]

  • 1988 IMO Problem 6

    I found about this legendary problem from a Numberphile video and was intrigued. Go watch the video, even if you have seen the problem before. It’s fun! Here’s the problem which is can be found on The Official IMO page. 1988 IMO #6. Let $a$ and $b$ be positive integers such that $ab + 1$ […]

  • BSME Mathematical Games class

    My next visit was to the BSME Mathematical Games, taught by Anna Kis, an experienced math classroom teacher who is currently earning an advanced teaching degree. Anna’s class was the most delightful of my visit, full of playful approaches to teaching advanced mathematical concepts to 11 or 12 year olds. After this class, I was […]

  • A BSME school visit

    My second BSME visit was to a partner school. Every week the BSME students have a visit to one of several partner schools around Budapest. The list is very interesting, and includes many English language schools, elite specialized schools, a school for the blind, and many more. I was part of a visiting team, invited […]

  • BSME Directed Research on Gender Issues

    I visited the Budapest Semester in Math Education program in October, 2017, and I’ve been eager to share my notes. I really like the program, and think that it can be an impactful experience for future math teachers. Especially for those with a very strong math background. For example, junior staff in the HCSSiM program […]

  • BSME vs BSM

    I arrived in Hungary, and am getting to know the Budapest Semester in Math Education (BSME) program. This program, now in its 3rd year of operation, is for undergraduate (and recent graduates) who are interested in the teaching of mathematics. They currently offer 5 courses that touch on different aspects of math education, and BSME […]

  • The Budapest Semester in Math Education

    I’m traveling to Hungary next week to visit the new Budapest Semester in Math Education (BSME) program. This program is intended for undergraduate students and recent graduates who are broadly interested in teaching mathematics, and promises to share Hungarian insights into mathematics and math education. BSME is already in its 3rd year, and has just […]

  • How to catch a cheater

    I proctored the AIME II contest this week, and caught a cheater. Here are some details and thoughts about the occasion. At about 4pm the day before the contest, I started getting emails and phone calls from parents, from tutors, some students, and even my math colleagues at Bard who had been contacted as well, in […]

  • Mathematical Writing

    Forgive me, but I’m often overjoyed to provide feedback on student writing as a math professor. Who knew?! Below are some of my favorite pieces of advice about writing mathematics, and I hope you will find them useful. Paul Halmos wrote How to Write Mathematics (original available here), and these are his key points: Say something. To have […]

  • Uniqueness of Factorization

    A few days ago I came across a proof of the Fundamental Theorem of Arithmetic (aka Unique Factorization) in Courant and Robbin’s What is Mathematics that I hadn’t seen it before. I liked it enough to learn it. Then another surprise – I saw it again yesterday in Primes and Programming by Peter Giblin, a book […]