Natural Math authors invite you for beta testing – Newsletter January 16

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Math Punday is Monday: the day to share math jokes on social media. I love Zeno’s paradoxes, and hope this recent post makes you and your children smile:

Half Off Haircut

Math pun by

Beta Readers

All activities in Natural Math books are play-tested many times, not only by the authors, but also by our beta readers. These adventurous and caring early reviewers help authors make books better. Beta readers are parents, teachers, and math circle leaders who want their math materials to be beautiful, useful, enjoyable, and human-readable. As a beta reader, what do you get?

  • You influence math materials, making them fit your needs. The book is customized by and for you, and your children.
  • You and your children are the earliest users of the newest books even before they are off the press. It’s like test-driving concept cars before they are even announced to the market.
  • You spend quality time with interesting people. In the context of the book, you talk with authors about your children and your ideas on learning. Imagine the possibilities!
  • In the book, the authors will thank you by your name or an alias of your choice.

Read on for two upcoming beta reader opportunities, one by email and one live.

The Fantastic Five

Bard Math Circle

Photo: Bard Math Circle

Meet new Natural Math authors Sam Coskey, Paul Ellis, and Japheth Wood. The working title of their book is The Fantastic Five. The book is for teachers, parents, and math circle leaders with students ages 10 and up as well as younger friends. It offers rich and original problem-solving activities in the contexts such as a trip to Mars or traditional Sona storytelling from Angola/Congo area. The authors write:

We are collaborating on a book of five math circle activities that we plan to publish with Natural Math. We would love it if you would agree to be a “beta-reader” of one chapter (or more, if you have time). If you have an appropriate forum in which to try the activity (such as a math circle or family math at home) that would be wonderful. If not, we would be happy if you would just read the chapter and provide feedback by email.

You are welcome to provide feedback in any form that you like. However, if you wish to have some guidance, we’ll suggest questions that we brainstormed together. 

Sam Coskey, Boise Math Circle
Paul Ellis, Westchester Area Math Circle
Japheth Wood, Bard Math Circle

RSVP to to test The Fantastic Five.

Math Talk: Math Roots

Alfreda Poteat is a Natural Math author who is passionate about the roots of modern mathematics in the world history, multiple cultures, and people’s stories. On January 23 at 7 – 8:30 PM Eastern (New York) time, Alfreda will lead a live online workshop. She invites parents and teachers of middle school children to join the workshop and play-test activities from her upcoming book with the working title Math Talk: Math Roots.

Alfreda’s thoughtful, playful, and kind book is especially suitable for a struggling learner. Children who’ve had some math grief or math anxieties are welcome to try accessible math activities. The book invites children to meet and pretend-play with the friendly geeks from the cave-people to modern-day scientists.

In the workshop, participants will improve on Euclid’s work, go on a math scavenger hunt in a cute board game, and explore mathematics of clay pottery.

Email to sign up for the online Math Roots workshop.

See you online!

Dr. Maria Droujkova, and the Natural Math crew

Math Is What You Make Of It

Questions? Ideas? Email

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