By ◆ Juppie on Wednesday, February 3, 2010 @ 4:35 PM


Last week, in math class, we watched a video called Donald in Mathmagic Land. It's an old Disney movie featuring Donald Duck which shows how math shows up in our lives.

The movie showed how music is actually based off of math. I believe it was Pythagoras, whom the Pythagorean Theorem is named after. He found out that to go an octave higher, you simply divide the length of a string in half. Different lengths of string would create different sounds/notes (C, D, E, F, and also the sharps and flats) Pythagoras's discovery then became the basis for the instrument we know as the harp.

Also, the film showed how math is used in nature. Many flowers had five petals, designed to look like a star, or a pentagon. And snails and other animals with shells had a spiraling shape, which is also mathematical.

Even people who play pool (otherwise known as billiards) use math. There are little markings all along the perimeter of the pool table. Some experts use those markings to decide how to shoot, and it also helps them to see where the ball will go.

It's a little hard to explain it in words. If you're bored one day and have a half hour of time, I suggest you go on Youtube and search for "Donald in Mathmagic Land". It seems that the movie can be watched on Youtube. It's pretty good considering that the movie was from 1959 or so.

Enough about mathematics itself...And on to math class. My teacher said that this morning he walked by and saw some students doing PE. They were having their pull-up tests on the metal bars we have at my school. He said that at our age, we're supposed to be at our athletic prime, and so he found it funny watching people who look buff struggling and struggling to do a single pull-up. They would strain and kick their legs but they wouldn't go up. But at least there were some people who could do lots of pull-ups, which sort of made up for it. Apparently, one guy said, "I'm so proud that I have a ripped friend," since one of his friends could do 15 pull-ups.

Lately, my dad has been really busy at work. He's practically working two jobs since he's still doing his old job and kind of doing another job too. He doesn't want to be a manager anymore. I was outraged because I think that being a manager is a good job. Before, my dad didn't seem to work much and he was being paid a reasonable amount. But my dad says that now his company is really getting their money's worth out of him since he's really working hard. I'm kind of worried because he looks tired. That's why I think he should go back to being a manager, just that, like the old days, so he can be relaxed.

My mother is also having troubles with work, but a different kind. She was moved downstairs (her cubicle used to be on the second floor of her office building). Now she's right near the door, which is both convenient (shorter walk to and from her car) and also annoying. There is a vent or something above her cubicle which has air coming out of it. My mom complained about it but it still seems to be blowing (she hung up something and it moves because of the breeze). She says she can't concentrate at work because of the breeze. Unfortunately, she hasn't been successful in getting to move to a different location yet.

The last time I visited my mother's office, we were going back to the building after lunch when we saw a person smoking. It was pretty close to the door. Ironically, there was a sign on the door that said "No Smoking within 20 feet of the building" or something like that. But the person was not that far from the building. I hope the smoke from his cigarette is not blowing into the building when the door opens... After all, it's bad enough to smoke, but it's much, much worse if you smoke in a place with other people. If you made a bad decision and start smoking, it becomes your loss, but if you smoke around other people then they could get lung cancer when they've never given into peer pressure or somehow or other picked up a cigarette.

I am still finding cigarettes around the school. It's probably not from the teachers because one of my old teachers says that if you smoke, you've pretty much ruined your chances of becoming a teacher...At least at elementary school, and perhaps also middle school. Where did the cigarettes come from, then? Is it from those people who come here on the weekends? (I didn't know those older boys who play basketball smoked, but you never know. We find old Gatorade bottles and gum stuck to benches...) I find it unlikely that middle school students would be smoking, but there are always snakes in the grass...

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