Magazine article ASEE Prism

Math on the Runway

Magazine article ASEE Prism

Math on the Runway

Article excerpt

Fashion designer Jhane Barnes uses fractal geometry to help her come up with beautiful prints. Fractal geometry produces patterns that repeat on a diminishing scale, resulting in abstract designs. Now, a new program in Ohio is using Barnes and her designs to help make mathematics less abstract to students. Ohio Math Works (www. ohiomathworks.com) is a collaboration between public television stations and businesses to help students in grades 7-9 realize just how useful math is in real life. It was launched after proficiency test results showed that the state's ninth graders were still struggling with math. The result of the partnership is five 20-minute videos in which Barnes and her staff of mathematicians discuss the importance of equations to her work.

The kit also includes a teacher's guide. The kit was distributed free to math teachers at schools in low-income neighborhoods around the state. …

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