This page is
the heart of TeachPi.org. It's where
you've come to find more than 50 ideas for ways to make Pi Day
entertaining, educational, tasty, and fun. And the list will
continue to grow.
This is the home for all Pi Day activities, large and small,
silly and thoughtful, that add to the celebration of learning on Pi Day.
You can navigate the list by clicking on the blue links above, next to
"activities." They'll take you to smaller, topical lists, where
you can browse, see what others have done, and decide what's right for
your school, this year.
We have scoured the accounts of hundreds of Pi Day celebrations, and
built what we've found into a thorough, descriptive collection of ideas.
Even better, we know there are far more ideas out there that we haven't
heard about, perhaps an idea that the teacher down the hall cooked up on
her own many years ago, and we would love to hear all of them.
Let's keep the list growing. Send them over to us at:
Have fun! Here's a
sample list of some of our favorites...
Hold a classroom or school-wide contest for the recitation of the
most digits from memory. Offer a free pizza pi(e) to the winner.
»»»» You should expect the winner to memorize
about 30 or 40 digits, but every once in a while, a student like Gaurav
Raja (Roanoke, VA) comes along. He's up to a whopping 10,980, finally
securing the North American record.
No Pi Day is complete without treats! Encourage students and
fellow teachers to bring in cakes, cookies, and pies with a Pi
»»»» Students at Chittenango H.S. in Syracuse, NY
who brought in pi-themed treats received extra credit points.
As a class or grade, create a pi chain with loops of
construction paper, using a different color for each of the ten
»»»» Word has it that Leslie H.S. in
Leslie, Michigan has set a new standard for pi chains everywhere:
13,726 links! And they did it all in a single school day!
»»»» Bloomfield H.S. in
Bloomfield, NJ spent Pi Day 2006 assembling a pi chain of 8,000
»»»» Students at Dallas H.S. in Dallas Township,
PA created a pi chain that was 7,147 digits long. It stretched nearly
half a mile.
Take an overhead photo of your students outside, forming the
first several digits of the number. Third graders can form the 3, first
graders the 1, and so on. A great image for the local newspaper!
»»»» This precise photo was taken at the
International School, Borneo (ISB) in March, 2005.
»»»» Why not make the math teachers the decimal point?
The day before Pi Day, pass out paper plates, and assign each student
a digit. Have them draw the number on the plate, and color and
decorate it. On Pi Day, hang them along a string or on the hallway wall,
or have everyone hold their plate and stand in one big circle.
»»»» At Foothill Knolls Elem.
in Ontario, CA, a square of more than 200 students was formed outside
the building, each one holding his or her decorated paper plate. "We
wanted to do just more than tell them about it," said sixth grade
teacher Beth Stone. "This allows them to actually become a part of Pi."
Ask students to compose an original song, poem, or piece of art
about Pi Day or the number pi. Hold presentations/exhibits, and
present any artistic awards, on Pi Day.
»»»» How about a "Pi-ku" poetry contest? (Think
Haiku.) For example:
Why not keep it simple, like
Find the fair-share size of each slice of pie that your students
are about to eat! As a demo or as group work, take the number of pies
donated, an assumed diameter per pie, and the number of students in the
class, and find the area of each piece when everyone gets an equal
»»»» For a further step, calculate the slice's
volume, or its surface area (assuming the pies are short
»»»» Angie Mentges' class at Sidney M.S. in Dayton, OH divided 11 pies
among 28 students.
Hold a pie-baking contest, where students and teachers bake and
submit pies to a panel of judges, maybe drawn from the community.
Raise money for a charity or your math club by selling the remaining
slices of each pie.
»»»» Teachers at Schroeder M.S. in Grand Forks, ND
raised $125 for their local Humane Society through a Pi Day pie bakeoff
they called the "Power of Pie" contest. Judging of the 22 pies was done
by the newspaper's food editor, and a few community leaders. Aside from
the overall winners, ribbons were also given to the Best Presentation
and Ugliest Pie.
Decorate your clothes with the pi symbol, and have the students
do the same! Let's hope the Art department will help you out with some
markers, glue, glitter, and a little puffy paint.
»»»» About 100 math students at Chittenango H.S.
in Syracuse, NY decorated t-shirts, shorts, necklaces, socks, jeans, and
hair accessories for the big day.
Play pi-themed songs over the P.A. system between classes, to get
people in the Pi Day spirit. We're talking about classic hits that
relate to Pi Day, as opposed to actual Pi Day carols.
»»»» Dutch Fork H.S. in Columbia, SC played
"American Pie" and "Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch" over the speakers during
passing periods on the big day.
Have students toss cream pies at the faces of teachers or
administrators. Make sure to charge a buck or two for each toss to raise
money for charity; they'll certainly pay it!
Divide your class into teams, and track their group scores as they
compete in a series of Pi Day events. Award team and individual
medals (or pies, or other round treats).
»»»» Student teams at the Montgomery Academy wore
colors to match their pie-themed team names, such as "The Banana
Creams," "The Key Limes," and "The Oreos." They faced off in speed math
tests, Pi Bingo, brain teasers, and computer games.
Hold a hula-hoop contest, as part of the festivities in an
assembly or lunchtime Pi Day event. Hey, they're circular!
»»»» St. Scholastica Academy in New Orleans, LA
held a Pi Day hula contest, perhaps to burn off the calories from the
Moon Pies everyone was given during first period.
Use Pi Day as a reason to go out with your department, perhaps for an
evening of pie at a local restaurant-bakery.
»»»» The Dupage County Science Fiction Society
holds an outing each year at various restaurants in Wheaton, IL, drawing
around 100 folks. It's open to the public, but they do enforce an
interesting dress code: Guests must carry a laptop, calculator, abacus,
slide rule, or other math gadgets. All of these must be used in
calculating the tip, of course.
In small groups or individually, have students give a short speech
(1-5 min.) on how pi, or math in general, is involved in their
»»»» "They're up there talking about soccer and
horseback riding and ballet, but it gets them thinking about math and
talking about math," said Corrine Biscardi, of her students at Galvin
M.S. in Wakefield, MA.
At a school-wide Pi Day assembly, hold a school spirit contest to
see which grade can shout "3 point 1 4 1 5 9!" the very loudest. Or, try
a longer chant. (see below)
»»»» The sixth grade beat the older classes to
claim the Warrior Spirit Stick at Stephen Mack M.S. in Rockford, IL in
»»»» Here's an example of a good, loud school chant. It can be
responsive, where each line is yelled by a different grade, and then all
grades shout the final line, inserting their own number for maximal
We love Pi Day to the core! March 14th is 3
Here's where Math gets really fun! Pi starts 3 point 1 4 1!
Let's make Pi Day come alive! Let's go, 3 1 4 1 5!
Pi Day's (4th) Grade's chance to shine! 3 point 1 4 1 5
Pick up a menu from a local pizzeria, and based on the prices and stated
sizes (12", 14", etc.), have students determine which pizza is the
»»»» At Stephen Mack M.S. in Rockford, IL,
students even measured the semicircle size of their bites. "The pizza
cost 6 cents a bite," the teacher concluded.
Challenge students to bring in at least 314 cans of food per
grade level. If they do, let them hit you with a pie!
»»»» That's how Paris Gibson M.S. in Great Falls,
MT was able to collect more than 1,700 cans on one recent Pi Day.
...and many more can
be found in the
ten categories above!