I love holidays! But there is one holiday that I think is severely underappreciated: Pi Day 3.14 otherwise known as March 14th! Now you’re probably asking, Isn’t that a nerdy holiday? Why should I even celebrate it?
Here’s my response:
You’re darn tootin’ it is a nerdy holiday! And yes, you should celebrate it! Why? Math is awesome and has changed our world in so many ways. The STEM field is growing at an exponential rate, so much so that our lives are changing because of it. So, I decided a long time ago that I wanted to instill this love of math in my children, and Pi Day is just the right holiday to help foster this love of math. Here are some ideas to help you celebrate Pi Day with your own kids (and you may end up falling in love with it too).
There are so many fun books to help elementary schoolers enjoy Pi Day! My favorite, however, is Sir Cumference and the Dragon of Pi. If you’re huge fan of puns and adventure, kids ages 4 through 10 will enjoy this fantastic mathematical tale! If your library doesn’t have it or you forgot to order it on Amazon, there’s a video of a reading someone did on Youtube. You can further enrich the story by cutting out pictures of dragons, knights, and a few of the other characters, placing them on popsicle sticks, and retelling the story through a puppet theater. This activity may be too elementary for kids 11 and up, but it would sure build a great foundation.
Pi Day Crafts
My favorite craft that I have stumbled upon is the Pi Day skyline! This is great for your artistic children. Children, from as young as 3, can join in on this activity. As they get older, your pi skylines can become increasingly more complex. There are also various other visualizations that your middle schooler may enjoy creating if they’re more of the creative type. Another craft idea is to create a paper chain of as many digits as possible from pi (I’m going to experiment with this one this year).
Pi Day Games
If your kids are into playing games, Pi Day is certainly full of them. An old favorite with a Pi Day twist is “pin the pi on the circumference”; be sure to have an outline of a circle on a wall and whoever pins the pi closest to the circle outline wins! My personal favorite is one of my own creations: the Great Pi race! Cut out pi symbols in colors specific to each child. Whoever pins their pi symbols the fastest to various circles in your environment wins! Lastly, if you’re less inclined to put a ton of effort into planning a game, be sure to play Pie in the Face. After all, who doesn’t want to see someone with whipped cream all over their face?
Pi Day Delicacies
It isn’t a celebration unless there is food involved! Anything circular is free game on Pi Day from pizza, cakes, cookies, and of course, PIE! It is definitely fun to eat all these foods, but make sure to get your kids involved in making some of them. Here’s my favorite, easy Pi Day pie recipe:
Easy as Pi Chocolate Pudding Pie
- 20 chocolate cookies (like Oreos)
- 1/4 cup of melted butter
- 1 pkg. chocolate pudding mix
- 1 1/2 cup of milk
- a container of whipped topping
- Place cookies in a plastic bag or a food processor. Crush cookies until they are fine. If using a food processor, add melted butter, and mix for about 20 seconds. If cookies were crushed by hand, place crushed cookies in a bowl and mix with melted butter.
- Press cookie and butter mix into a 9” pie round. Place in refrigerator.
- Mix chocolate pudding mix and 1 1/2 cup of milk until completely mixed.
- Pour half of the pudding into the prepared cookie pie crust.
- Mix the rest of the pudding with half of the whipped topping. Pour into the pie round, but be sure not to mix with the rest of the pudding filling!
- Cover the pie with whipped topping. Place in refrigerator to set for 3 hours.